sally6340June 15, 2014

Want is a good fertilizer for hostas? Thanks!

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Why? Sorry, after 40+ years it's been my experience they generally don't need it. If you have healthy soil & adequate moisture, hosta thrive on their own.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2014 at 11:20PM
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Thanks for advice. I overwintered one in a container in our garage. It's alive and healthy but still small, not many leaves. Thought it might use a little help.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2014 at 11:54PM
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Babka NorCal 9b

I give mine in pots 1/2 strength fertilizer. Miracle grow mixed in water. Every two or three times I water them. The available nutrients in a pot run out rather quickly.


    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 12:20AM
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I got some fertilizer they sell that is made from Kelp. It did wonders on our hay field, my lawns and vegetable garden so used it part strength to my pots and the geranium leaves are huge so I just gave them to my clematis and the leaves are turning darker green and many flowers but them we did use aged manure in the spring for the hosta so who knows. I think the pots can use it much more so then the ones in the grounds. It doesn't burn either. It may not be readily available unless you are close to the coast. Before I had this I used Miracle grow too

    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 12:59AM
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I agree with Gardenweed. But my beds are not just hostas. Sporadically (not every year), I spread a layer of compost. Once every few years, I get some sacks of alfalfa pellets and toss those around. Go to your farm supply store. Alfalfa pellets are horse feed. Gardens love them.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 10:29AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

potted hosta??

be very careful.. that all fert .. is used up by august ...

we need them to be going dormant in fall .. not wired up on fert ...

so i would suggest a quarter diluted water soluable fert.. with every watering .... and stop by late july ... it doesnt matter what kind.. whatever you have.. or is extremely cheap ...

just keep a gal milk jug by the pot.. and use it ...

there are many posts about potted hosta... in case you get enabled ...

when is the last time you repotted it??? if its been a few years.. it might be time to do such.. do NOT buy media.. with fert in it ...


    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 10:57AM
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Alfalfa pellets are especially good for potted plants. I don't have any potted hosta, but I use them on my potted daylilies all the time. They look goofy until they dissolve or are covered by foliage, but there is never any danger of burning - throw a few earthworms into the pot and they'll take it from there.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 12:30PM
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Like Faye/AlmostHooked, I have kelp. But mine is the dried form of it, and it does not take much. My hosta are primarily in containers, so the advice from Babka would apply. Even in containers, I repot fairly quickly (every 2 years) or when it squats down in the pot too low. The time release pellets don't last here because they dump it all when temps hit 90, and that has long come. I provide LOTS of water however. A good drink regularly is worth a lot of fertilizer.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 12:45PM
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Moc, We got the dried form and it really goes a long way at approx. 1 cup of powder to on gallon of warm water to dissolve and then mixed with15 gallons of water and that is good for one acre. I have cut down the mix to a smaller quantity and sure is worth it's weight in green! Everything looks lush this year including our lawns( who never get watered unless overspray from the flowers) You can tell what is important by the water it gets. Should have realized you would know the kelp value Moc!

    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 1:20PM
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Faye, you'd be surprised where I learned about kelp. It was in Ireland.

My DH's mother told of going with her Da as a child to LaHinch and gathering kelp (seaweed) from the beach to add to their crops. I guess there is a lot of kelp available in Ireland which has no spot very far from the oceans. Think how GREEN everything is there.

I'll tell my DH how you mix yours so he can begin to add it to our lawn. He and the neighbor seem to be in a competition of the greenest or most lush lawn. I know he will appreciate it. I'd purchased the dried kelp for my hosta, but as you say it does not require that much.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 2:36PM
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Thanks so much everyone for all the advice/suggestions. I really do appreciate it. I have so much intense sun (all day long) on my patio and in my landscaped areas, it's difficult for me to have any hostas. But I have found that I can grow one in a container under a 2nd story deck, which gives protection from the sun, and my hosta does well! This is the 2nd year for it, but it's not spreading or filling in the container like it did last year. I didn't want to over-fertilize & end up burning it, so now I have a much better idea what to do. I will also stop fertilizing by late July. Thanks again!!!

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 12:25AM
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I have never fertilized my hosta beds. I think the leaves from the trees (in my case, oak and walnut) must be enough.

In fact, I don't fertilize any of my flower beds. Never have. When I do fall or spring clean-up, I merely cut everything to ground level and let it lie there to compost. Nobody fertilizes the grounds in my forest and it is very lush. Same process.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 4:04PM
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For hanging pots & containers of annuals I use a very weak mix of seaweed extract and fish emulsion added to a water-filled 1 liter seltzer bottle. I set the inverted bottle in a plant nanny embedded in the growing mix.

Sally6340 - I didn't realize you were referring to growing in containers since all my hostas are in the ground. Generally the worms do the job for me and I don't concern myself with how they go about it.

Like many perennials, hostas can have good years as well as bad years. Several of mine super-sized themselves last year and again this year and have grown to more than double their normal size already.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 8:04PM
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Sally, take a look at Squash Casserole by Tony Avent. I knew I'd added it for a reason but it slipped my mind. Until this week and I ran across Tony's comments about SC. It can take the heat as long as it gets adequate moisture.

Perhaps that is why my SC is gone crazy this year, and it gets a good deal of sun while staying in good leaf and quite solid gold. I'm pleased how so many golds with more sun than I've ever given any of them, are holding the gold look.. Those in less demanding spots where shade is present much of the day, they are already green.

For you I'll upload my camera shots just taken this afternoon.
Don't have them tagged yet.

Looking over the open bloom of a fragrant hosta at all the golds catching last of the late afternoon sun. It was a hot one today but I watered.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 10:32PM
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Gardenweed, thanks for the update on the fertilizer! I should have mentioned I had my hosta in a container on my very 1st post, so my fault there.

Moccasinlanding, thanks for sharing the picture & info of your Squash Casserole, beautiful & healthy even in the in sun & heat! I was completely unaware of this variety. I just recently registered on Gardenweb, and am so impressed with how helpful people are. I should have been on here a looong time ago!

    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 10:58AM
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hosta_freak(z6 NC)

Like Ryse Ryse,I also never fertilize my hostas,except when planting a new one to get it going. My garden is in the woods,so it gets leaves from Oaks,Poplars,and Dogwoods every fall. Phil

    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 11:25AM
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