Hostas forum→What Fertilizer, slug etc do you use?

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Name: aud/odd
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
Jun 6, 2020 3:48 PM CST
As soon as our Spring rains begin I go out with my bag of epsom salt and throw hand fulls through the garden. I started doing that yrs ago because I read On GardenWeb that Mary Chastain of Lakeside Hosta was using Epsom salt to enhance the hosta color.

Then the next week I spread coffee out for the slugs. I have slugs as big as snakes. Big Grin I know many people will not waste an expensive bag of coffee but I do not drink coffee and I was getting it free when I had so much business travel I had a lot. Since retirement I now just buy a cheap bag every yr when I see it. It cannot be used coffee grinds it has to be un-used coffee,

Using the coffee I get double hosta needs acidic fertilizer and slug killer so it is not a big price since I get a 2-for.

My other slug go away is I never use mulch. I use plants as my ground cover.

So what is your process to have beautiful Hostas.

[Last edited by Cinta - Jun 6, 2020 3:51 PM (+)]
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Name: Bob
Vernon N.J. (Zone 6a)
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Jun 6, 2020 8:07 PM CST
I would be careful with using Epson Salts each year since salts do not leave soil for a very long time and can make soil toxic.

Feeding your garden beer, coffee and epsom salts: Do they really work
Updated Jan 13, 2019; Posted Jun 11, 2015

By Bill Finch

Epsom salts

I'd like to blame the internet for making such a senseless sensation out of Epsom salts. But the honest to goodness truth is that gardeners have been crippling plants with Epsom salts for generations.

Plain and simple, no garden soil will ever benefit from Epsom salts, which is a common name for household products containing magnesium sulfate. If you're lucky, the use of Epsom salts in your garden will merely be a waste of good money and time. In the doses used by most gardeners, however, Epsom salts will promote soil toxicity, often leading to ailments like blossom end rot, serious and long-term potassium deficiency, and sometimes (if enough is used) outright death of the plant.

Yes, I know your grandmother used Epsom salts to water her potted plants. Fortunately, she couldn't afford to use very much. In containers with poor, depleted, acidic soil that is poorly fertilized, there may be some very minor and temporary benefits of a tablespoon of Epsom salts once every year or two, and maybe that's how all of this got started.

But plants need only a tiny, tiny drop of magnesium, and it's a rare soil that is actually deficient in it. To avoid magnesium toxicity, the calcium content of the soil needs to be at least 10 times higher than the magnesium. Adding Epsom salts without adding calcium can really throw things out of whack (and I suspect that's why people who use Epsom salts regularly on their tomatoes often complain about blossom end rot).

Sometimes, soils that are too acid prevent plants from using magnesium efficiently. But the best and only long-term remedy for that is to add organic matter or garden limestone or both. When organic matter breaks down, it lessens the acidity and promotes uptake of minerals. Garden limestone contains a nearly perfect balance of calcium and magnesium, so it never results
Name: aud/odd
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
Jun 7, 2020 3:09 AM CST
But Bob I have been doing it for 30 yrs. LOL. If I do not give my roses epsom salt the amount of blooms are pathetic.

When I was caring for my Mom for two yrs the roses were pathetic and the hostas were eaten to the core between the slugs and deer I am at a replenish buying frenzy. I cannot stop now I see the results.
[Last edited by Cinta - Jun 7, 2020 3:14 AM (+)]
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Name: Teresa Felty Barrow
South central KY (Zone 6b)
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Jun 10, 2020 3:10 AM CST
I am curious, you put down coffee ground straight from the container? I have one area that has slug bites but most don't thankfully. Having senior moments and cannot find the left over Sluggo
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Name: aud/odd
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
Jun 11, 2020 2:39 AM CST
Yes it is the caffeine that is suppose to effect them so used grinds ate only good for fertilizer. It really did not take that much. Those hotel coffee package are small and I used 10 packs for an area 60 x 20.

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