In April I channeled my inner Wonder Woman and began transplanting hostas from the backyard to the front yard. After all, I had the perfect piece of land for them. I quickly learned a few things. Hostas are stubborn, they grow like beautiful weeds, they make spectacular ground, and (according to my neighbor) they look like aliens (seriously though, they kind of do). Here the steps to transplanting hostas:
- I dig the plants up in early spring before they have a chance to come up, just as they are breaking the ground. Transplanting when the hostas are larger can create broken or damaged leaves.
- Take the spade and slice under them by repeatedly stabbing, about 4 inches or better horizontally below. Dig all around the hosta and (using a garden shovel or fork) pop the hosta out of the ground.
- Rinse as much of the old soil off as you can without damaging the roots, and then move your hosta to its new home. Beware, hostas are heavy! (If you’re thinking about dividing your plants, now’s the time to do it.) Have a wheelbarrow handy or a tarp that you can use to drag the hosta to its new home.
- Keep the roots damp and shaded, particularly if there will be a delay in when you transplant. Hosta plants depend on their roots’ rapid adjustment to their new environment.
- Set the hosta in its new home a little above the depth it was in the old. Fill in around it with the enriched soil, mounding the soil around the hosta until it’s covered to a little over the depth it was before. When the soil settles over time, the hosta will rest at its original depth. Keep the hosta well-watered for the next six to eight weeks. Watch it carefully in the weeks thereafter for signs of wilt due to lack of moisture.
Be aware that the first season after transplanting the hosta may yield smaller leaves due to trauma, but the following year will see your plant happy and healthy once again.