Hostas in large planter boxes

Swanlake999(8b)August 18, 2014

I am a newbie gardener who has been growing hostas in pots for several years. I am planning to divide them in the fall (zone 8b) and would like to move them into a large planter box to form a border along the back wall of our garage. (Part sun, part shade). The ground underneath is clay, so digging down is very challenging. We will be building the planter box in the next few weeks. It will be about 20 feet long. (Maybe that qualifies as a raised bed!). If anyone can suggest a reasonable width for the box and recommend the soil depth, it would be very much appreciated! My hostas should have been divided years ago, so I will break down 6 pots into about 24 plants. .

Many thanks in advance for your help.

This post was edited by Swanlake999 on Mon, Aug 18, 14 at 22:12

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Babka NorCal 9b

So you are going to "quarter" each pot? How big are the pots? Actually hostas never "need" to be divided. They just get bigger and wonderfuller...I like that new word. It really does depend on the hosta. Some require more room than others. Whatchu got? If you want your Sagae to get over 7 feet wide, or your Pandora's Box to get up to 1 ft. wide, it will all depend on whatchu got?


    Bookmark   August 18, 2014 at 10:47PM
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Thanks for your response. I knew someone was going to ask that as soon as I hit 'submit'. I thought I would quarter each pot so that I get some fairly rapid growth in the spring. As far as I can figure out I have Wide Brim, Francee and two other unidentifiable types (one may be Patriot). They are true survivors having lived through several years of outright neglect. They just keep coming back every spring. I would think that once they are out of their 16 inch pots, receive some well-deserved attention and have room to grow, that they will spread. I thought about adding a couple more varieties but perhaps I should pay penance to the existing plants by taking care of them properly before adding new ones.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2014 at 11:33PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

francee is easily a 4 foot wide plant..

so you box should be 4 feet wide.. min ...


    Bookmark   August 19, 2014 at 8:03AM
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Also agree to Ken's suggestion of planter of 4 ft wide and bordering a shed or garage, Make sure you plant them inside the water drip for when it rains or the force from the roof will wash all your soil away from the roots. Yes, I did it and had to move 20 different hosta back closer to the shed. If you are on the ridge side you are okay.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2014 at 12:19AM
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Jon 6a SE MA

I agree with Faye and Ken. I think the reason 4 feet is often used in 'raised beds' is because it gives easy access from both sides. In your case the 20' length will certainly have it classify as a planter. Since it will be against your garage then there will be access from one side only (unless it is grounded and may be set away some) I might consider 3' as more practical for access or aesthetics.

Nothing wrong with a raised bed either. 20 ft of timbers PT or RR ties) might fit a 'rustic' style or you may have a more formal idea in mind.

Lay out some boards, scratch the outline in the ground or In some way look at what seems to be the proportion you like at the depth you intend to use. Four feet will be the optimum for capacity, but may overwhelm the area, or not if it is a large area.

My two cents.


    Bookmark   August 20, 2014 at 9:05AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

of course.. you could just get rid of the OLD monster francee ...

and collect smaller hosta ...

rather than trying to bonsai a monster into a small plant every few years ...

if it dont fit.. get rid of it ..


    Bookmark   August 20, 2014 at 9:44AM
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