A 6-Step Guide to Care for Your Hostas
Are you thinking about planting hostas in your yard? Or do you already have some, but aren’t quite sure how to take care of them? These flowering plants are fairly easy to care for and will come back year after yard, as long as you treat them right.
In fact, hostas are so hardy that they can actually be split into multiple plants – and they’ll still grow. You’ll learn everything that you need to know about caring for your hostas right here in this handy guide. Before you know it, you’ll have a series of happy, blooming plants that will brighten up your yard.
1) Transplant Them in The Spring
If you plan on moving your hostas from one place in your yard to another or have some very large ones that you want to split into multiple plants, springtime is the best time to do so.
You shouldn’t transplant them or even split them during the winter, because the weather is too cold for them to take root. The summer is typically far too hot. If you want your hostas to properly take root and survive, then you need to handle these tasks in the springtime.
2) Water Them Appropriately and At the Right Time of Day
You want your hostas to have green, supple leaves, not brown and wilted ones. This means that you need to water them regularly. Always check the soil first to ensure that it’s not too moist. (Soil that doesn’t drain well can harm the plant’s roots, especially if you over water it.)
Push the tip of your index finger into the soil to check the soil. If it feels moist, then you don’t need to water the plant. However, if the soil feels dry, then you’ll want to water it. Make sure that you water your plant either in the early morning or later in the evening.
Never water during the peak times of day, because the water will evaporate due to the heat. On top of this, place the water around the roots of the plant. If you sprinkle the water on the leaves, the sun could burn them.
3) Add Some Compost
While you’re doing your spring garden maintenance, you’ll want to get out the compost and add some around the base of your hostas. You can either make this compost yourself out of kitchen scraps and other materials in a compost bin behind your home, or you can purchase it from your local home and garden center.
All that matters is that you add compost to the soil around your plants because it provides plenty of food for them to grow. It’s kind of like an all-natural fertilizer. Once you’ve spread the compost around the roots of your hostas, add plenty of water. You can then top this with mulch, which will help the soil (and the compost) remain moist no matter how hot it gets outside.
4) Keep Critters Away From Your Hostas
Did you know that many critters find hostas to be quite tasty so you have to protect the hostas from getting ravaged? They include squirrels, rabbits, and even deer. On top of this, you’ll have to deal with some insect infestations as well. Slugs and snails tend to cluster on the leaves of these plants, slowly eating away at them until they are destroyed.
Thankfully, there are some all-natural ways to keep these critters away. You can make a concoction out of some red crushed pepper, a little cayenne pepper seasoning, and plenty of water.
Spritz it onto the plant’s leaves (make sure to not do this during the hottest parts of the day) and then let it dry. It won’t hurt the plants, but it will ensure that those critters and pests no longer find the leaves to be tasty.
5) Know When to Divide Your Hostas
We already mentioned the best time of year to divide these plants, but now it’s time to discuss when – age-wise – they need to be divided up. Ideally, you’ll do this every four years or so.
This gives the plants plenty of time to grow in size so that they can be safely divided. If you do this when the plants are too young, they may not have enough roots left to survive.
6) Trim Them Back in the Fall
When you’re putting your garden to sleep for the winter, you’ll want to trim back the green leaves and stalks of your hostas. Wait until after the first frost to do this. If you do it any sooner, you may harm the plant.
However, if you don’t trim the plant back, then it won’t grow as robustly next year. You need to take caution when caring for perennials like hostas, in order to ensure that you can enjoy them for years to come.