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A picture of a Hosta 'Empress Wu' (PBR)

Hosta 'Empress Wu' (PBR)

Hosta 'Empress Wu'

Also known as

Plantain Lily 'Empress Wu'

Photo by Bali-HaiMailOrderNursery (All rights reserved)

Partial Shade
Easy care
Moderate watering
Frost Hardy


RHS hardiness


Minimum temperature

Expected size








2 years to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has no fragrance

Hosta 'Empress Wu' (PBR) Overview

Hosta 'Empress Wu' is a hardy perennial cultivar that forms large mounds of wide, blue-green ruffled leaves. In mid to late summer, erect stems of nodding pale lavender flowers appear. All Hostas need some shade, and few will thrive in strong sunlight. A general rule is that the lighter foliage, the brighter the sunlight that will be tolerated. Variegated varieties tend to require more sun to keep their white, light green or gold stripes. The darker, bluer varieties need more shade. They are ideal for growing in North facing aspects of your garden where most other plants would struggle. Once established, Hostas are pretty tough and will spread horizontally to make an excellent ground cover. They are suitable for most garden styles and look good in containers (but keep well watered and watch out for vine weevil in pots!). They require little care apart from tidying up spent leaves and flowers at the end of the growing season, preferably an autumn mulch. Also, in spring, to retain moisture. Hostas like a sheltered position in moist, well-drained soil and do best in a slightly acidic growing medium, but this isn't necessary. Any good garden soil - unless very alkaline - is fine. This cultivar is a new seedling from Brian & Virginia Skaggs, USA. A cross between (Hosta pycnophylla x Hosta 'Harvest Dandy') and (Hosta 'Blue Arrow' x Hosta 'Sea Fire.') and is protected under intellectual property laws by Plant Breeders' Rights. These provide the breeder of new plants exclusive control over the plant material for a set amount of time.

Common problems with Hosta 'Empress Wu' (PBR)

Can also suffer from a virus.

How to harvest Hosta 'Empress Wu' (PBR)

Generally not harvested but foliage can be cut for floral arrangement as required.

How to propagate Hosta 'Empress Wu' (PBR)


Divide clumps every 4 or 5 years in late summer or early spring. Ensure each section has 1 to 3 good buds and trim away damaged roots. Replant at their original depth in the ground with the shoots just poking through the soil. Water and apply a granular feed.


Collect seeds in autumn from dry seed heads, sow in spring and place in a cold frame. Seeds are unlikely to come true.

Special features of Hosta 'Empress Wu' (PBR)

Attractive leaves

Ground cover

Pot plant

Other uses of Hosta 'Empress Wu' (PBR)

With it's lush foliage it suits being included in sub-tropical gardens as well as being used as an underplanting of shrubs and roses in informal or urban gardens. With an OPALS rating of 1, these plants are considered 'Good' to include in a low allergen planting scheme.