Need to move some

marquest(z5 PA)April 28, 2012

When do most of you move your Hostas?

I think it is best to move them in the Fall so I do not have a ugly looking garden all summer. But I really need to move some because they grew faster than I have had them grow before. So they are too tight and covering each other.

Would you move them now or wait until Fall if they are too crowded?

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

i just wish someone had done a very intensive post on HOW TO MOVE A FULLY LEAFED OUT HOSTA

because if they did.. the title would be searchable.. and up it would pop .. upon request ..

rotflmbo ....


    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 11:46AM
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jan_on zone 5b


    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 12:14PM
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Babka NorCal 9b


Here is a link that might be useful: Ken's Vary Intensive Post on Moving a Hosta

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 1:04PM
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leafwatcher(zone 5)

Ken, could you write something like that up? :)

I wish I had found this sight a year BEFORE I got interested in Hosta.. instead of a COUPLE years after I bought cheap plants from every box store on the planet ;) And some nicer places as well...

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 1:53PM
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you know, she didn't quite ask HOW...she asked when.
just sayin'

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 2:46PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

hey andi .. THE PIX ARE DATED ...

whats that all about.. lol ...


ps: the whole point of the post.. is that you can move.. a FULLY LEAFED OUT HOSTA ... wait for it.. when ever you darn well please ... IT DOESNT MATTER ...

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 3:03PM
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marquest(z5 PA)

Aww you are all so very nice. It was so nice of you to try to answer the question. lol

Thank you andi_mn, I know how to move a fully leafed out Hosta. I moved a Sum & Substance that I had to use a dolly to move to it's new location.

I was asking if anyone had moved one early spring late spring, or if you would wait until Fall.

Ken I saw "HOW TO MOVE A FULLY LEAFED OUT HOSTA" a long time ago it was very nicely done.

But..... it was not the question I asked.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 4:02PM
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A couple of days ago I moved two large seedlings out of the seedling bed and into spots in the yard. I did it before they leafed out, while they were still five-inch eyes, because I didn't want to deal with them after they leafed out. That seems like a good time to me.

It's also easier to knead a lot of the dirt out of the roots when they are at that stage. Makes the hosta a lot lighter when moving it.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 4:37PM
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thisismelissa(z4a-S Twin Cities MN)

I prefer to move them RIGHT NOW!
While they're pips, before they leaf out. This way, they leaf out looking happy.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 4:48PM
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Yep, not that I've moved any from the ground that much. Just dug up some about to go dormant, into pots, and when they woke up they were in their new homes.

I'll also add that the ones in the pip/shoot stage are much easier to satisfy in their new locations, than the fully leafed out ones--which have to be finessed into resuming their vigorous look.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 5:34PM
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Melissa and Moccasin make a very important point. If you move a leafed out hosta, even following Ken's good advice, it will likely lose some turgidity....and that's not a good thing, ya know. If you move it in the eye stage, you will fool the leaves. They will pop up without even knowing they've been moved.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 7:06PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

ok.. to be very clear

you move your hosta.. when you darn well please ... [and thats not really the word i wanted to use]

because.. two reasons..

1 -- they are hosta

2 -- there are methods to overcome or avoid shock ...

and to be clear.. those in the pix were moved on AUGUST 22nd ... and most of us will call that.. THE HIGH HEAT OF SUMMER ....

so to answer this question: When do most of you move your Hostas?

when i.. as master of my domain.. declare that it is time to move the hosta ...

i have moved them:

in march

in april

in may

in june

in july

in august

in september

in october..

and in november ...

as such.. i am master of my domain ... which brings to mind a very funny seinfeld episode ... but i dont know when that was ...


ps: and no.. i am not upset or mad ... i am trying to be funny to make a point.. and hoping i am not missing that aim ...

pps: december, january, & february the ground is FROZEN SOLID.. so as master of my domain.. i declare that they are not worth moving at that time .... [though i would bet a shiny penny.. that if i could dig.. they could be moved ....] .. so.. what does that leave out???? nothing.. move them when you want them moved.. and you have time.. and a shovel.. and some water ....

ppps: the issue in late fall.. is winter HEAVE... on small pieces ... in ground freeze areas ...

pppps: seize your domain.. and show it whose boss ...

    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 7:48PM
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I've moved them at various times of the year with mostly success. About a month ago I dug up a huge clump of Lemon Lime, pulled it apart in a couple dozen bits, potted up half for sale.and planted the rest. I watered them well and they never even wilted, now they are filling their pots with roots and lots of new leaves. Chopped (literally) a huge chunk off a very old Blue Wedgwood, chopped that into two pieces, potted one for a friend and planted the other. Also dug up a First Frost, cut out a sport, replanted both, and none of these plants so much as wilted a leaf.

I have moved big established plants with a good soil ball that didn't even know they had been moved. I've bare-rooted them, treated them ruthlessly, and as long as I made sure they were well-watered, nothing seemed to faze them.

I said all that to say this: with a few exceptions (Great Expectations being one) I don't hesitate to move them when it is necessary,
as long as they are dealt with promptly and not let to dry out, and kept well watered afterwards. If I had to redo a whole bed, I would do it in the fall when they are going to sleep so they wake up in their new quarters in the spring, if I had a choice. Next best for me would be early spring when they are just coming up.


    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 8:19PM
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Oh I love this forum. I talk to a lot of people in the FB hosta forum but just doesn't have the kind of veracity that is so prevalent here.

Yes a hosta can be moved at any time. However we all know that doing so causes growth issues at times. From a physiological standpoint the best time to dig up and move is late summer and very early fall. The hostas normal growth pattern is to produce foliage and next years additional eyes in the spring. Once this occurs the plant goes into foliar dormancy except for a few species and their hybrids which produce second flushes of growth. Then during the summertime the plant produces its flowers. This is somewhat muddied with cross pollination of northern growing species with southern growing species but the pattern is the same regardless. In late summer and early fall the plant then begins to produce most of it's new roots before going dormant for the winter.

Case in point about production of new eyes. How many have purchased new plants in spring or early summer only to have no additional growths the following year? This is do to the disturbance of the plants normal growth pattern. So for what is worth the best time to move would be very late summer or early fall so root damage from the move can be repaired before the next growing season.


    Bookmark   April 28, 2012 at 8:41PM
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marquest(z5 PA)

Thank you all for your response. I really do appreciate the input. I am not new to Hostas but sometime you need a little input for comfort to move them. I knew in my heart I should have moved them before they leafed out but you know how humans are they want someone to tell them it is OK. lol

The hostas normal growth pattern is to produce foliage and next years additional eyes in the spring.

This explanation was interesting and informative. I have been growing hostas for 15 years and do not know why I did not know this. Extra, Extra thank you for that info.

After all your helpful encouragement, thank you, I am going to move them now. I wish I had got to them before they leafed out this far but I think it will be better for them in the long run than letting them push their neighbors off the face of the earth all year.

Ken i am trying to be funny to make a point.. and hoping i am not missing that aim ...
I got you... I know your humor. It is hard to hurt my feelings unless you step on my neck physically. Or take the shovel out of my hand. Then and only then will I not find humor.

Again Thank you all.....Now out to get that shovel and get these hostas moved. It is going to rain all next week that should help a lot.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2012 at 9:01AM
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hey ken...made me laugh this morn...smiles are a good thing

    Bookmark   April 29, 2012 at 1:25PM
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bernd ny zone5(5)

I already moved hostas this spring, while only pips showed. Guys came to replace a window just next to them. The hostas survived well, continue growing. That move and replanting also gave me the opportunity to amend the soil. I had them temporarily in large pots.
I would say do it early now or late in fall. Otherwise, like with many things around the house and yard, do it whenever you feel like it, think about it and have time to do it. Pruning trees is also one thing to do when you have time.
I used my grandson's plastic sled to move a hosta, no need to pick it up high, simply slide it onto and off the sled. Keep your back healthy.
Good luck!

    Bookmark   April 29, 2012 at 1:26PM
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