Hostas forum: Dividing and moving hostas

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Vanityflsyahoocom
May 14, 2016 9:10 AM CST
Hi Hosta lovers , I am somewhat new at Hosta's . At what time in the year can I divide and move hosta's ? Any advise is appreciated ! Fred Lee !
Silver Spring, MD (Zone 7a)
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ssgardener
May 14, 2016 10:23 AM CST
Hostas are really hard to kill. Big Grin I once dug up a clump and left it above ground and it survived the winter. If they're large, already very healthy, and well-watered, then they can be divided and moved pretty much any time of the year, especially if you give them shade and water them well after transplanting. But transplanting a large hosta with fully-unfurled leaves can be a pain in the neck.

The best time of the year (especially for young hostas with less established roots) for transplanting and dividing are spring and fall. Fall planting is great for hot-summer areas and spring planting is good if you get frigid winters where your soil freezes early. I personally find it easiest to divide hosta in early spring when just the pips are showing.

Also, avoid digging in the area if it's too wet/muddy.

Name: Ann
Ottawa, ON Canada (Zone 5a)
Hostas Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Composter Region: Canadian Clematis
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ViolaAnn
May 14, 2016 3:05 PM CST
I agree. It's much easier to divide hostas in the spring before they leaf out fully. If you do it later, you are likely to damage the foliage and the water requirements are more critical when it's warmer too. But through experience I've found that hostas are not created equal in how easy they are to divide. Some will literally fall apart. Others can be teased apart with a bit of work. Others literally need a cut through the crown. For me, in my Zone 5a garden, I've found that those that need to be cut seem to divide more easily in the autumn. YMMV.

Another question is to ask yourself why you are dividing. Do you want more plants? Or are they simply outgrowing the space available? In the latter circumstance, I've sometimes just taken a clean, sanitized spade and cut a bit off the edge of the plant. Sometimes you get viable sections you can pot up. But you will likely destroy a few eyes in the process.

And please note that hostas (plural) does not need an apostrophe.
Ann

Pictures of all my hostas, updated annually and tracked since 2008 begin at: https://violaann.smugmug.com/Garden/Hostas/Hostas-in-my-gard...
Name: Wes
Ohio (Zone 6a)
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Wes
May 17, 2016 2:32 AM CST
Internet reading and videos can really cloud division tactics. The smaller the plant the more intimate the affair. HTH
Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
Consider the lilies of the field
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bluegrassmom
May 17, 2016 4:04 AM CST
I would like some advise. Yesterday, I went to a friend's estate sale. Her parents had passed and is moving to GA. Long story short she had a huge hosta that I have always loved. I asked her could I buy one. She said just go dig it up. YAY! Now, it is unfurled and at least 36 in tall. So, do I just dig a huge hole, add amendments and water. Maybe some Super Thrive. Please help!

Happy in KY
Name: Paul
Utah (Zone 5b)
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Paul2032
May 17, 2016 4:20 PM CST
Last summer the gas company had to dig 2 of my large mature Hostas to install a new meter. They ended up being out of the ground for several days. They replanted them carefully backfilling the soil. I kept them watered and gave them some dilute Miracal Grow. They are 1\3 smaller this year but look just fine.


Paul Smith Pleasant Grove, Utah
[Last edited by Paul2032 - May 17, 2016 4:26 PM (+)]
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Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
Consider the lilies of the field
Seller of Garden Stuff Irises Hostas Region: Kentucky Lilies Peonies
Region: United States of America Garden Photography Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Cat Lover Heucheras
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bluegrassmom
May 22, 2016 2:19 PM CST
I was wondering which hosta do you think increase well? Several of my daylily buyers comment on my hosta. I am thinking about adding a few to grow out and then to pot a few extra to have in pots. Nothing fancy because most are into daylily collecting lol.
Name: Ann
Ottawa, ON Canada (Zone 5a)
Hostas Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Composter Region: Canadian Clematis
Canning and food preservation Container Gardener Annuals Herbs Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
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ViolaAnn
May 22, 2016 4:05 PM CST
MANY increase well. It would help a lot if you could give us and idea of colour, size and any other characteristic. Do you want to be able to divide them for a border? (Not all divide equally easily).
Ann

Pictures of all my hostas, updated annually and tracked since 2008 begin at: https://violaann.smugmug.com/Garden/Hostas/Hostas-in-my-gard...
Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
Consider the lilies of the field
Seller of Garden Stuff Irises Hostas Region: Kentucky Lilies Peonies
Region: United States of America Garden Photography Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Cat Lover Heucheras
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bluegrassmom
May 22, 2016 4:14 PM CST
I was wondering about Gold Standard, June, Sum and Substance? I don't ever dig mine so I didn't know that some are more difficult.
I wanted something in the med and large range. Maybe Patriot? Any help would be appreciated.
Name: Ann
Ottawa, ON Canada (Zone 5a)
Hostas Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Composter Region: Canadian Clematis
Canning and food preservation Container Gardener Annuals Herbs Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Image
ViolaAnn
May 22, 2016 4:28 PM CST
You can't go wrong with 'June'. 'Patriot' is pretty but not a fast grower. And mine has occasionally, in a wet spring, had a tendency to drawstring. If you want fast growers, the tiara family is a good bet. If you want large and splashy, 'Liberty' is a real looker. There are other large ones, but because I'm cramming hostas into a city lot, I don't have many.

If you want smaller hostas for borders the 'Lemon-Lime' family is a good bet. So is good, old-fashioned 'Allan P. McConnell'
Ann

Pictures of all my hostas, updated annually and tracked since 2008 begin at: https://violaann.smugmug.com/Garden/Hostas/Hostas-in-my-gard...
Name: Teresa
South central KY (Zone 6b)
Consider the lilies of the field
Seller of Garden Stuff Irises Hostas Region: Kentucky Lilies Peonies
Region: United States of America Garden Photography Vegetable Grower Hummingbirder Cat Lover Heucheras
Image
bluegrassmom
May 22, 2016 4:30 PM CST
Thanks for the input. I have a nursery not far from me that is more into shrubbery and trees but they do care June and a few others in 3 gal pots.

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