How to Cover Hostas During a Freeze


Because of hosta's wide range of colors and textures, and the plant's ability to thrive in low light, they are a gardener's dream. Hostas are tough, durable plants that once established, will survive cold winters with very little assistance. However, young shoots that emerge in early spring are susceptible to unexpected freezes. If spring has sprung but a freeze is forecast, you can cover hostas to get them through the cold snap.

Step 1

Cover tender hosta shoots if an early spring freeze is forecast. Anything that will protect the hosta will work, such an upside-down laundry basket or garbage can, or a blanket, towel or sheet. If necessary, install stakes in the soil to prevent the cover from touching the leaves.

Step 2

Remove the protective cover as soon as the temperature warms up in the morning and climbs past the freezing mark. Re-cover the hosta in the evening if the cold snap is predicted to last another night.

Step 3

Prepare hosta plants for winter with a 3- to 4-inch layer of organic mulch such as straw, bark mulch or pine needles. Mulch is most important for hosta plants during their first two to three years, as the mulch will protect the plant from damage caused by freezing and thawing.

Things You'll Need

  • Protective cover
  • Wooden or metal stakes (optional)
  • Organic mulch


  • Chatanooga Regional Hosta Society: The Hosta Connection
  • Hosta Hosta: Green Hill Hostas
Keywords: cover hostas, hosta plants, hosta in freeze

About this Author

M.H. Dyer is a long-time writer, editor and proofreader. She has been a contributor to the East-Oregonian Newspaper and See Jane Run magazine, and is author of a memoir, “The Tumbleweed Chronicles, a Sideways Look at Life." She holds an Master of Fine Arts from National University, San Diego.