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Hostas – Divide and Conquer

May 12th, 2009 · 5 Comments

Split Up Your Hostas and give em to your friends.

Split Up Your Hostas and give em to your friends.

So you have some large and tight hosta plants just screaming to spread themselves far and wide?

Dig Them – Split Them – Transplant Them!

It doesn’t get any easier than this.  Hostas seem delicate but their roots are very strong and can bounce back from poor treatment.  I love to dig them up and split them up and know they will perform for me even if I beat them up a bit.  I guess then you can call it another way to get out aggression.

Reasons to split up your overcrowded hostas:

  1. You get more beautiful, easy to take care of hostas for free!
  2. You get more beautiful, easy to take care of hostas for free!
  3. You get more beautiful, easy to take care of hostas for free!
  4. You can give them to your friends and family and look like a rock star when you make the neglected shady spot in their yard where nothing else will grow look like an extravagant bonanza of texture and contrast.
  5. They grow in poor soil so when you dig them up and re-plant them you don’t need great potting soil, just tell your friends to try and give you back the pots you gave them.

I have heard that the best times to split them is either in the fall at the end of seasonal production or beginning of spring when they first start to come up, but really you could do it whenever you want and it will come back next year with no problem.  Make sure you give each new plant enough room to grow and remember they can get really big depending on the variety you are using.  They come up straight and then they bush out, bend over and around. I have also heard that using a sharp knife is a good technique for splitting.  I honestly just use the brutal force of my hands after spraying as much dirt off the roots as I can.  As you may expect there are some casualties with this technique but if a piece breaks off here and there you may be surprised to see it come back if you replant it as well.

Hostas get big.

Hostas get big.

Hostas are part of the a lily-like family.  There are many many species and vary in size.

They are herbacious perrenial plants and are classified in the Liliaceae family.

Find out more about hostas at Wikipedia.

My hosta splitting took me about 30 minutes.

My hosta splitting took me about 30 minutes.

Easy as Pie or Should I say Easy as a Hosta

Easy as Pie or Should I say Easy as a Hosta

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Tags: Organic Gardening Techniques · Transplanting

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jennifer // May 13, 2009 at 6:19 pm

    The first rule of fight club is don’t talk about fight club.

    Very nice article :)

  • 2 Joyce // May 24, 2009 at 8:38 am

    Hosta’s can you just break off a leaf and put it in soil to start? Wondering cuz that is what I am trying right now…

  • 3 David // May 24, 2009 at 9:03 pm

    Hi Joyce,

    I have never tried that but I know that hostas tend to be very forgiving. I did the same thing last year when I broke off a tomato branch by accident and stuck it in the ground and it grew back with a vengence. Please come back and tell us about your results.

    Thanks, David

  • 4 Emmon // Jul 6, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    What a delightful and delightfully-written article. I love the way you simplify this whole hosta-dividing process — which just sounds more complicated on other sites I’ve visited. Plus, you’re fun to read! Cheers!

  • 5 Emmon // Jul 6, 2012 at 5:07 pm


    I blogged about this on our garden living website, http://www.QuestionAndPlanter.com. If you want any changes, just let me know. It was wonderful to find your site! We have about 38,000 garden followers and growing, and we’re happy to steer them your way! Have a wonderful evening! Emmon

    Emmon Scott, Publisher
    c/o Arden Companies
    30400 Telegraph Rd., Suite 200
    Bingham Farms, MI 48025

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