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Hosta 'Empress Wu' PP20774 CPBR4240

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Photo Courtesy of Walters Gardens, Inc.
 Series Name: SHADOWLAND® Collection
Common Name: Hosta
Proven Winners® Perennial
PAS Platinum Collection
  • Huge dark green, deeply veined leaves of good substance can measure more than 1½ feet wide and long. Large leaves are formed as a young plant, though entire clump takes about 5 years growing in the ground to achieve mature size.
  • Strongly upright habit, forming a very tall and wide clump
  • Pale reddish violet flowers appear just above the foliage in early to midsummer
  • An outstanding focal point and topic of conversation in your shade garden!
  • A top seller!

Hostas are exceedingly popular perennials in today's gardens due to their versatility in the landscape. Their subtle colors, tall flower scapes, and broad, coarse leaves fill a niche in garden designs that few other plants can achieve. Their large leaves provide excellent coverage for dying bulb foliage. Hostas also grow well in city environments where the air may be polluted by car exhaust, etc.

'Empress Wu' has been selected by gardening expert P. Allen Smith for his Platinum Collection.  Here's what P. Allen has to say about this fabulous plant:

"A Hosta lover's dream! 'Empress Wu' is always a "jaw dropper" when guests see the size of her leaves and flowers on five foot tall stems."

 

Click here to watch a video about Proven Winners® Hostas.

 

The SHADOWLAND® Trademark is owned by Walters Gardens, Inc.

Breeder: Brian & Virginia Skaggs

Origin: Not Native to North America

Characteristics:



Height:
  3-4 Feet
Spread:
  5-6 Feet
Scape Height:
  4 Feet
Flower Color:
  Purple-red shades
Foliage Color:
  Green shades
Hardiness Zone:
3,4,5,6,7,8,9
Find Your Zone
Sun or Shade?:
  Part shade (4-6 hrs. direct sun)
  Full shade (< 4 hrs. direct sun)
Wet or dry?:
  Average water needs
  Consistent water needs
Want to see wings?:
  Attracts hummingbirds
How fast should it grow?:
  Rapid
When should it bloom?:
  Early summer
  Midsummer
How's your soil?:
  Average Soil
  Fertile Soil
Sweet or Sour Soil?:
  Acidic Soil (pH < 7.0)
  Neutral Soil (pH = 7.0)
What's your garden style?:
  Woodland/Shade
  Cottage
  Formal
  Asian
  Eclectic

Attributes:

Border plants
Cut flower or foliage
Specimen or focal point
Easy to grow

Grower Note:

Growing in full sun in Indiana, 'Empress Wu' has not burned when given adequate water.

Homeowner Growing & Maintenance Tips:

Hostas grow best in moist, well-drained, highly organic soils with a pH between 5.5 and 7.5. Sandy loam is better than clay because it provides more aeration for the roots. High-filtered or dappled sunlight is necessary for clean, healthy growth. Morning sun is tolerable and will help to intensify the leaf colors, but hot afternoon sun is usually deadly to hostas. They are most at home in shady, woodland settings and often work well as specimen or edging plants.

Especially in northern zones, hostas should be mulched with a layer of finely shredded organic material to prevent heaving in the winter. Mulch is beneficial because it retains moisture around the plant's roots, but it is also the ideal place for slugs to hide. Watch for holes in the center of the leaves. If they are present, so are slugs. Applying a slug bait in early spring when new shoots are beginning to emerge will help to reduce the slug population. After a few years when plants are firmly established, the mulch can be removed completely, which should eliminate the slug problem altogether. Also be sure to clean all hosta foliage out of the garden in early winter after the plants have gone dormant. By doing so, you will be ridding the area of the eggs of slugs and other leaf-eating insects.


Companions:

Common/Botanical Name
Zones  
Astilbe chinensis 'Purple Candles' ('Purpurkerze')
Common Name: Astilbe-Chinese
4,5,6,7,8,9
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Dicentra spectabilis 'Alba'
Common Name: Bleeding Heart-Old Fashioned
3,4,5,6,7,8,9
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Brunnera macrophylla 'Jack Frost' PP13859 CPBR1799
Common Name: Brunnera-Heartleaf
3,4,5,6,7,8
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Heuchera 'Blackout' PP20613
Common Name: Coral Bells
4,5,6,7,8,9
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Tiarella 'Crow Feather' PP12335 COPF
Common Name: Foamflower
4,5,6,7,8,9
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Miscanthus sinensis 'Nippon'
Common Name: Grass-Ornamental
5,6,7,8,9
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Helleborus 'Golden Sunrise'
Common Name: Lenten Rose
4,5,6,7,8,9
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Liriope muscari 'Big Blue'
Common Name: Lily-turf-Blue
5,6,7,8,9,10
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Pulmonaria 'Raspberry Splash' PP12138
Common Name: Lungwort
3,4,5,6,7,8,9
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Primula 'Pacific Hybrids'
Common Name: Primrose-English
3,4,5,6,7,8
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Cimicifuga ramosa 'James Compton'
Common Name: Snakeroot-Black
4,5,6,7,8
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Geranium 'Dragon Heart'
Common Name: Geranium-Hardy
5,6,7,8
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History:

'Empress Wu' was named in honor of the only female emperor to rule China (during the Tang Dynasty).

Hostas have gone by many names, including Funkia, Plantain Lily, Giboosi, and Hemerocallis.

While every effort has been made to describe this plant accurately, please keep in mind that the height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates throughout the country. The description of this plant was written based on our experience growing it in Michigan (USDA hardiness zone 5) and on numerous outside resources.