Part of the Asparagaceae family,  is a large genus comprising more than 70 species as well as hundreds of hybrids and cultivars. With rare exception, these herbaceous shade-loving perennials are grown for their foliage, not their flowers, yet hostas still offer surprisingly diverse color. The leaves can be blue, yellow, or green. Sometimes, one will find a pleasing blend, such as when there’s just enough yellow and green to form chartreuse. In addition to all this variety in color, these stars of the foliage world are often varigated.

Most people know hostas as shade-loving plants, and, indeed, they serve this purpose admirably. Hostas can be excellent ground-cover plants for large expanses of shady garden territory, blanketing the earth with soft color while blocking out weeds. Few plants are easier to care for, though they can be susceptible to leaf damage from snails and slugs. Once established, hostas are incredibly easy to propagate by dividing the root clumps in spring or fall.

Here are 12 excellent hosta types that run the gamut of foliage color.