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How to Winterize Hosta Plants

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How to Winterize Hosta Plants

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Overview

Hosta plants are generally cold tolerant and tend to grow larger and healthier in cooler climates. They do not require much care during winter if planted outside in the ground; their leaves will naturally die off in the fall and they go dormant. However, if you plant hostas in containers they can be placed anywhere you like, and moved any time during the growing seasons. Overwintering hostas in containers requires specific care.

Step 1

Plant hostas in either plastic or clay growing pots in the fall. Larger hostas generally do best potted in soil-based growing medium, rather than one composed largely of peat as this will cause them to dry out too quickly.

Step 2

Put a small broken piece of crockery or pot shard at the bottom of the growing containers, over the drainage hole. This will help assist in draining excess water, as it prevents the hole from becoming completely clogged with soil.

Step 3

Stop watering the hostas once inside for winter. They should be watered every two to three days from the time their shoots begin to grow in spring to the time the leaves die down in the fall because hostas have a large leaf area and evaporate a considerable amount of water. However, when it is time to bring them inside, letting them grow dry helps them to go dormant as they should.

Step 4

Store the hostas in an unheated room, such as a garage or greenhouse. Hostas do not like heat and prefer a cool, shady environment. Lining the containers on shelves mounted to the wall of your garage is a perfect setting.

Step 5

Add fertilizer just below the surface of the soil in the pots in early spring just before you are ready to bring them outside again, after the last frost.

Things You'll Need

  • Unheated room
  • Growing containers
  • Potting soil

References

  • "The Gardener's Guide to Growing Hostas"; Diana Grenfell; 1996

Who Can Help

  • Hosta Hosta: Tips
Keywords: winterize hosta plants, potted hosta plants, hostas in containers, hosta winter care

About this Author

Naomi Judd, CIG, has been a writer for six years and been published in Tidal Echoes, Centripetal, The Capital City Weekly and Northwest.com. She has a self-designed Bachelor of Arts degree in adventure writing from Plymouth State University and is currently earning an Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from University of Southern Maine.