Ask a Question forum: Hosta in pots

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Name: Meri Taylor
SD (Zone 4b)
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mnmat
Mar 29, 2017 5:08 PM CST
I'd like to plant up an old washtub full of small Hosta. I'm in zone 4b and am wondering if they would make it thru the winter. The planted tub will be too heavy to move so the Hosta need to survive the -28° weather we occasionally get. The tub is 12" deep and 20" square.
Meri
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Mar 29, 2017 8:32 PM CST
I think it would be dicey. We usually plan that plants in containers have to withstand temperatures two zones below your zone as they don't have the entire earth acting as insulation. You would have to find plants that did well in Zone 2.

Your best option might be to use annuals in your tub so you wouldn't have to worry.
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Name: Christine
Saugerties, NY zone 5a
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Christine
Mar 30, 2017 7:24 AM CST
I agree with Daisy, your only other option would be to bring the washtub in to a garage or un-heated basement would work IMO.. I've had hosta's in containers for years, I'm in NY, I bring them into my screened in porch and they survive the winters here, your alot colder in ND.
Name: Carol Roberts
Huntington Beach, CA (Zone 10b)
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CarolHB
Mar 30, 2017 1:31 PM CST
I have the opposite problem - not cold enough. When I want a hosta I treat it like an annual. No way its coming back after a fairly warm winter (60* is really cold here). They bloom nice, tho.

Edited to add: I only garden in containers.
Can't complain too loud about how the ball bounces when I'm the one who dropped it.
[Last edited by CarolHB - Mar 30, 2017 1:32 PM (+)]
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Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
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Weedwhacker
Mar 30, 2017 4:48 PM CST
CarolHB said:I have the opposite problem - not cold enough. When I want a hosta I treat it like an annual. No way its coming back after a fairly warm winter (60* is really cold here). They bloom nice, tho.

Edited to add: I only garden in containers.


Carol, that's a good reminder of how big our country really is! Smiling
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Name: Meri Taylor
SD (Zone 4b)
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mnmat
Mar 30, 2017 6:03 PM CST
Sighing! Thank You!

I was REALLY hoping you'd all say sure, it'll work fine, go for it! The tub would be too heavy to move so I guess its annuals. Sighing! Thank You!
Meri
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Mar 30, 2017 6:10 PM CST
Agree with the comments, I used to grow hostas in containers, they do well during the warm months in shade, but even in our mild winter area, they get zapped once fall cold temps comes. On the other hand, with our mild winter, I do not need to pull them up, I just leave them there all winter long. Unfortunately, my enemy afterwards are the ever present slugs and snails..so I just stopped growing them.
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Mar 30, 2017 6:11 PM CST
I used to keep pots of them, too, but the slugs and snails became too much of a problem. Hostas just seemed to draw them in from miles around!
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Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
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Weedwhacker
Mar 30, 2017 6:39 PM CST
mnmat said: Sighing! Thank You!

I was REALLY hoping you'd all say sure, it'll work fine, go for it! The tub would be too heavy to move so I guess its annuals. Sighing! Thank You!


Meri, if I were you I'd go ahead and try it... I have some sedum "Autumn Joy" plants that are in pots (extras from dividing up a couple of big plants) and they've gone through several winters despite being totally neglected. Hostas are probably not quite as invincible as sedum, but it wouldn't surprise me if they would survive in a container. (If they don't, you can always replace them with annuals next year Smiling )

“Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer /
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Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Cactus and Succulents Plays in the sandbox Greenhouse Sempervivums
Bromeliad Adeniums Avid Green Pages Reviewer Brugmansias Garden Ideas: Level 1 Tropicals
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plantmanager
Mar 30, 2017 7:28 PM CST
Good idea, and if you think about it, throw a frost blanket over them when it's bad weather. You might be surprised and it'll work.
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Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
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dyzzypyxxy
Mar 30, 2017 7:37 PM CST
Hostas are pretty expensive to be experimenting with, in my experience. If these are divisions that somebody gave you, then I guess you have nothing to lose but the plants. Here, (I'm at my daughter's in Salt Lake) when I pay $20 for a Hosta plant, I put it in the ground and go to great pains to make sure it's well mulched in the fall.

In my opinion, your only chance to have Hostas survive in a metal wash tub would be to sink it at least part way into the ground and pile leaves and other insulating mulch over it after the leaves die back in fall.
Elaine

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Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
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Weedwhacker
Mar 30, 2017 7:55 PM CST
OMG -- no, I wouldn't be experimenting with $20 hostas either!

I'm apparently living in an alternate hosta universe or something... mine came from a $5 hosta "grab bag" (as in, $5 for 3 hostas) Whistling
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Name: Carol Roberts
Huntington Beach, CA (Zone 10b)
Sunset 24
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CarolHB
Mar 30, 2017 10:12 PM CST
I got my 'Patriot' at HD for $7 and was enormously pleased with the value for the $. I got lovely pics and was very happy with it. It was a bucket list thing to do so I don't need to repeat it. I'm just happy to have the digital memories. No way would I spend any more than that. I did consider getting a collection of the mouse series and a little fridge for them during the winter, but l just don't need to - I've had one and that's enough, at least for now. I'm on to pots and pots of glads now.
Thumb of 2017-03-31/CarolHB/295d7d

Can't complain too loud about how the ball bounces when I'm the one who dropped it.
Name: Christine
Saugerties, NY zone 5a
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Christine
Mar 31, 2017 7:19 AM CST
Carol, it's beautiful, so perfect it looks fake Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Carol Roberts
Huntington Beach, CA (Zone 10b)
Sunset 24
Container Gardener Foliage Fan Annuals Dog Lover
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CarolHB
Mar 31, 2017 8:23 AM CST
Thanks, Christine. I loved it every day until it got all scrappy looking. There's an amythyst (sp?) heuchera in that space now, which may be moved at any time.

Can't complain too loud about how the ball bounces when I'm the one who dropped it.
Name: Meri Taylor
SD (Zone 4b)
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mnmat
Mar 31, 2017 11:51 PM CST
Weedwhacker, I like the way you think! Last fall a friend told me to come get some Hosta out of her front yard. They were growing in the middle of her yard in grass and they just kept mowing them down then they'd grow right back up. I think I got about 50 plants. I planted them in a unused shady bed I was planning to plant up this year. It sure wouldn't hurt to pull a couple up and put them in the tub. If they make it thru next winter I'll replace them with the minis and if they don't make it no big deal as I have a lot of them left.

Carol HB that is a nice lookin Hosta!
Meri
Name: Carol Roberts
Huntington Beach, CA (Zone 10b)
Sunset 24
Container Gardener Foliage Fan Annuals Dog Lover
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CarolHB
Apr 1, 2017 1:15 AM CST
Thanks Meri - I was so pleased with that hosta that I didn't mind at all treating it like an annual because at the end it wasn't very nice looking anymore. Here's another shot with the sun coming through the lattice up above the hosta. Sometimes I think its kinda weird that I have no interest in having another one. One the other hand I've always been a sprinter, not a marathoner, and I don't have enough years left to grow all the pretty plants even if it is only for one season.
Thumb of 2017-04-01/CarolHB/892baa

Can't complain too loud about how the ball bounces when I'm the one who dropped it.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters Butterflies Birds
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Weedwhacker
Apr 1, 2017 7:43 AM CST
Meri, you've made me curious about how it would work to grow (and overwinter) them in pots, too; I have 6 that are in serious need of dividing up this spring and I've been wondering what I'm going to do with all the divisions... so I think I'll put some in pots to use in our back yard, where our dogs have their pen. That area was, once upon a time, pretty nice looking... then we made the dog pen and Sticking tongue out . If they die over the winter, that's okay!
“Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer /
Cubits.org - A Universe of Communities[/I] / Share your recipes: Favorite Recipes A-Z cubit
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
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tarev
Apr 1, 2017 9:31 AM CST
The hostas were really wonderfully nice in containers, so lush during the warm months and manages to make some blooms for me too, I do miss them:

I had three types here, way too much I think, but they were so happy looking, Minuteman, Aureomarginata and Wide brim
Thumb of 2017-04-01/tarev/062646

And don't know anymore which one was it, but it always managed to give blooms in June before:

Thumb of 2017-04-01/tarev/dfe577
Thumb of 2017-04-01/tarev/2786aa

[Last edited by tarev - Apr 1, 2017 9:33 AM (+)]
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