Hostas are a staple perennial in many gardens. Known for their shade-loving tendencies, these gorgeous plants can help add a touch of color to shady corners in your yard.
They're available in a variety of shades of green in both solid and variegated varieties, making it easy to find the perfect plant to accent your garden space. An added bonus is that they're quite easy to grow.
Before planting hostas, it's important to check out these tips:
1. Best to plant in spring or late summer
Hostas can be planted any time the ground is workable, but they do best when planted in the spring or late summer after the hottest part of the season has passed. This will allow root systems to become established before the hottest part of the growing season, or before the plants go dormant in the fall.
2. Prefer moist soil
Plants like soil that will hold water well, without being overly damp. Their shallower root systems can't access water held deeply in the soil. Mulch your garden beds to help retain soil moisture.
3. Need a fairly large space
While the plants may grow fairly wide, their root systems will extend outward in the soil almost to the edge of the leaves. Plan on giving each plant approximately 2-3 feet of space to allow it to have adequate room for root growth.
4. Add organic matter to hole
When preparing planting holes, make sure you dig holes that are wider than they are deep. Then add a generous helping of finished compost or other organic matter to the bottom of the hole, working it into the soil. This will help to improve the soil structure, increase water retention, and provide nutrients to the plant over time.
5. Soak bare root stock before planting
If you're planting bare root stock in the spring, soak plants in water a couple of hours prior to planting. Remember, bare root planting is quite short and you can easily miss it if you aren't on top of your calendar.
6. Mulch cautiously
It's important to mulch around plants to help soil moisture retention, but you don't want to mulch directly up to the stem of the plant. This encourages fungal problems and other diseases, as well as voles if mulch is applied too thickly.