Aspidistra attenuata Hayata
Aspidistra punctata albomaculata Hook.
Aspidistra variegata (Link) Regel
Plectogyne variegata Link
Common Name: Aspidistra
Aspidistra elatior is an evergreen, perennial plant with a spreading rootstock. The leaves are up to 50 - 60cm tall, they arise singly from along the thick, fleshy rhizome, forming in time a thick mat of growth[
The plant is widely grown as a house plant outside its native range and is also cultivated in gardens where the climate is appropriate - it can make an effective ground cover. It also has a range of traditional medicinal uses.
E. Asia - Japan (Kuroshima, Suwanose, and Uji Islands), Taiwan, Vietnam.
An understory plant, found growing in forests beneath Ardisia crenata and Castanopsis sieboldii[
|Other Uses Rating||
Aspidistra elatior is a plant of the warm temperate zone, though it can withstand occasional short-lived temperatures down to about -15°c if they are well sited[
]. A plant growing under shrubs in Worcestershire, England (where frosts are common), has survived in the garden for over 30 years[
Prefers a shady position in a rich well-drained soil[
]. Tolerates poor soils and drought[
This plant used to be commonly grown as a house plant, it tolerates considerable neglect[
The roots, stems and leaves are febrifuge, styptic and tonic. The plant is said to strengthen bones and muscles[
A decoction of the root, stems or leaves is used in the treatment of abdominal cramps, amenorrhoea, diarrhoea, myalgia, traumatic injuries and urinary stones[
Aspidistras can be grown as a ground cover in a shady position[
Seed - sow spring in a greenhouse. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on for at least their first winter in the greenhouse. Plant them out in late spring or early summer after the last expected frosts.
Division as the plant comes into growth in the spring[
Suckers. Best removed in the autumn and grown on in the greenhouse for the first winter.