How to Boost Sluggish Hostas


If your hostas show signs of distress and you see browning foliage, act swiftly to boost sluggish hostas. Generally sturdy plants that thrive in a garden, hostas may suffer if they lack nutrients or water. Provide fertilizer at the beginning of the growing season to get your hostas off to a flying start. If hostas seem to be suffering during the summer, add aged compost to the soil to give them a boost.

Step 1

Fertilize hosta plants in early spring with the balanced liquid fertilizer. This will ensure they have a generous supply of nitrogen to develop a showy display of rich, green leaves. Mix the fertilizer with water according to package recommendations and apply the fertilizer around the base of the plants. Do not allow the fertilizer to touch the plant foliage.

Step 2

Observe your hosta plants as the growing season progresses. If you notice suffering plants that appear brown or wilted, boost your hostas with an application of aged compost. Sprinkle the compost evenly on top of the soil around the base of the plants. Do not allow the compost to touch the foliage. Instead, keep the compost approximately 2 inches away from the stems.

Step 3

Rake the compost into the soil gently with the hand rake to encourage the nutrients in the compost to soak down into the soil. This will nourish the roots and provide nitrogen to the growing hostas.

Step 4

Water the hostas generously after you add the compost to the soil.

Things You'll Need

  • Balanced liquid fertilizer (20-20-20)
  • Aged compost
  • Hand rake


  • Creative Homemaking: Fertilizing Hostas
  • Iowa State University Extension: Hosta Crown Rot
Keywords: boost sluggish hostas, fertilizing hostas, add aged compost

About this Author

Kathryn Hatter is a 42-year-old veteran homeschool educator and regular contributor to Natural News. She is an accomplished gardener, seamstress, quilter, painter, cook, decorator, digital graphics creator and she enjoys technical and computer gadgets. She began writing for Internet publications in 2007. She is interested in natural health and hopes to continue her formal education in the health field (nursing) when family commitments will allow.