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List of Fast-Growing Large Leaf Plants

Plants with large leaves give your yard a bold jungle or exotic-like ambiance. It also eases the house’s architectural style by adding dramatic shapes and diversifying the garden’s scenery.

Moreover, they are convenient for both large and small-scale outdoor spaces. 

Here are some of the fast-growing large-leaf plants you can plant in a container or garden as an outdoor plant for a bold statement.

1. Plantain lilies – Hosta

Plantain lilies - Hosta
Plantain lilies – Hosta. Image: Flickr/Christine S
  • Scientific name: Hosta
  • English name: Plantain lilies
  • Local name: Hosta, arrow-leaved hosta
  • Family: Asparagaceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf: Broadleaf

The plantain lilies are tropical outdoor plants with large leaves native to northeast Asia regions like China, Japan, and Korea. 

Their green leaves have different shades of color, including white, silver, and cream, contributing to their fantastic foliage.

The herbaceous perennial plant has broad ovate or lanceolate leaves and white, lavender, or violet flowers that are mostly scentless. 

They flourish best during spring or summer in moist soils with low maintenance. However, its foliage is a magnet for slugs and snails.

2. Mayapple – Podophyllum peltatum

 Mayapple - Podophyllum peltatum
Mayapple – Podophyllum peltatum. Image: Flickr/Roman Olynyk
  • Scientific name: Podophyllum peltatum
  • English name: Mayapple
  • Local name: American mandrake, ground lemon, wild mandrake
  • Family: Berberidaceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf: Broadleaf

These fast-growing large-leaf plants are native to the eastern United States and southeastern Canada. 

The herbaceous perennial plant’s fruits are poisonous and contain toxins called podophyllotoxin when green. However, the fruits are safe to eat when they turn yellow.

Its features include broad umbrella-like leaves and white, yellow, or red flowers. The single roots are rhizome-like and have yellow, green, or red fleshy fruits. 

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The native wildflower thrives in rich, moist soils with plenty of organic matter in the summer and spring.

3. Elephant Ear – Colocasia

Elephant Ear - Colocasia
Elephant Ear – Colocasia. Image: Flickr/Dionepsoc
  • Scientific name: Colocasia
  • English name: Elephant ear
  • Local name:  Elephant ears, cocoyam, taro
  • Family: Araceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf:  Broadleaf

The native tropical perennial plant is native to Asia, Australia, Central America, South America, and Africa. 

The elephant ears are grown as house and outdoor plants for their lush foliage and attractiveness.

You can identify the plant by its large corm below or on the ground’s surface and large arrowhead-shaped leaves. 

Its flowers are yellow-whitish and bloom in late spring to early fall.

It reproduces by rhizomes and, like other species of the family, contains chemicals that cause intense discomfort when exposed to the lips, hands, and throat.

4. Leopard plant – Farfugium japonicum

Leopard plant - Farfugium japonicum
Leopard plant – Farfugium japonicum is a fast-growing large leaf plant.Image: Flickr/Joyce-Tex-Buckner
  • Scientific name: Farfugium japonicum
  • English name: Leopard plant
  • Local name: Leopard plant, Britt Marie Crawford, tractor seat plant
  • Family: Asteraceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf: Broadleaf

These perennial species of the family Asteraceae are large-leaf outdoor plants with flowers and is native to the seashores and streams of Japan, Taiwan, and Korea. 

It’s evergreen and can be grown in containers and gardens with rich, moist soils.

The leopard plant’s descriptive features include large round or kidney-shaped leaves with a smooth texture. 

It also has yellow daisy-like flowers that bloom in clusters during autumn and winter. The plant is low maintenance since it doesn’t require pruning or deadheading.

5. Umbrella Plant- Darmera peltata

Umbrella Plant- Darmera peltata
Umbrella Plant- Darmera peltata. Image: Flickr/ Marlin Harms
  • Scientific name: Darmera peltata
  • English name: Umbrella plant
  • Local name: Indian rhubarb
  • Family: Saxifragaceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf: Broadleaf
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The umbrella plant is a herbaceous perennial plant grown for its unique foliage, as its leaves are paler at the bottom than at the top. 

It’s native to the western parts of the United States, including northern California and southwestern Oregon.

The plant has thick rhizomes and toothed and deeply lobed green leaves that turn red in autumn. Its white or bright pink flowers sprout before the leaves in spring.

They are easy to grow since they require little care, maintenance and are pest and disease free.

6. Siberian Bugloss – Brunnera macrophylla

 Siberian Bugloss - Brunnera macrophylla
Siberian Bugloss – Brunnera macrophylla. Image: Flickr/Valery
  • Scientific name: Brunnera macrophylla
  • English name: Siberian bugloss
  • Local name: Great forget-me-not, heartleaf, largeleaf brunnera
  • Family: Boraginaceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf: Broadleaf

Given its unique name, the Siberian buglosses are hardy, large-leaf plants that grow fast and are native to the Caucasus region, like Asia and Europe. 

It’s popular for its unique foliage and small beautiful blue flowers that bloom in spring.

The herbaceous perennial plant has dark green heart-shaped leaves that grow on slender stems and are 12 to 18 inches tall. 

The low-maintenance plant can be planted in pots when it’s a seedling or in shade gardens where it can grow until it matures.

7. Japanese banana – Musa basjoo

Japanese banana - Musa basjoo
Japanese banana – Musa basjoo. Image: Flickr/Andrew
  • Scientific name: Musa basjoo
  • English name: Japanese banana
  • Local name: Japanese fiber banana, hardy banana
  • Family: Musaceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf: Broadleaf

The Japanese fiber banana is an incredibly architectural plant native to southern Japan and China. 

The fast-growing large leaf plant has trunk-like pseudostems of about 2 meters and is cultivated for its banana fruits and fibers or ornamental plant.

The herbaceous perennial plant boasts evergreen and paddle-shaped giant leaves and large yellow or cream flowers that bloom during summer. 

It’s a great choice for gardeners who like an exotic look as a garden or potted plant with little maintenance.

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8. Chusan palm – Trachycarpus fortunei

Chusan palm - Trachycarpus fortunei
Chusan palm – Trachycarpus fortune. Image: Flickr/Frans
  • Scientific name: Trachycarpus fortunei
  • English name: Chusan palm
  • Local name: Chinese windmill palm, Chusan palm, windmill palm
  • Family: Arecaceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf: Broadleaf

Chusan palm is a hardy evergreen tree native to China, Japan, India, and Myanmar. It’s great for its fan-shaped dark leaves that bring a jungle vibe to urban gardens.  

The plant grows 12 to 20 meters as a single-stemmed fan palm with long leaves. The male flowers are yellow while the female is green and both in summer and spring. 

Moreover, it’s low maintenance and pest- and disease-free, making it the ideal outdoor plant.

9. Butterbur – Petasites japonicas

Butterbur - Petasites japonicas
Butterbur – Petasites japonica. Image: Flickr/oliverchesler
  • Scientific name: Petasites japonicus
  • English name: Butterbur
  • Local name: Giant Butterbur, great butterbur, sweet-coltsfoot
  • Family: Asteraceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf: Broadleaf

Butterbur, or giant butterbur, are green plants with big leaves native to China, Japan, Sakhalin, and Korea. 

Japanese immigrants later introduced The spectacular plant in Europe, North America, and Canada.  

The herbaceous perennial plant is suitable if you have a large area since it spreads quickly and requires to be contained in one space. 

Its 30-inch wide leaves are rounded and kidney-shaped with toothed margins. 

The greenish-white flowers bloom on the ground in late winter or early spring and often go unnoticed.

10. Canna Lily – Canna

Canna Lily - Canna
Canna Lily – Canna. Image: Flickr/Wayne T. ‘Tom’ Helfrich
  • Scientific name: Canna
  • English name: Canna
  • Local name: Canna Lily
  • Family: Cannaceae
  • Annual or perennial: Perennial, annual
  • Grass, sedge, or broadleaf: Broadleaf

Canna is a great outdoor plant that adds a tropical and bold texture to a garden, balcony, or porch.

Despite being a herbaceous perennial plant in a tropical climate, it’s a fast-growing annual large leaf plant that thrives in a cool climate as long as they receive at least 6–8 hours of average sunlight.

The plant is native to tropical South America, Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. 

It can be identified by its large foliage of broad, flat, and alternate tropical leaves of solid green, maroon, or brown color. 

Its asymmetric flowers are red, orange, or yellow in color or a combination of those colors, which adds up to its ornamental appeal. 

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