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Hosta care

Hosta Care - How to Grow Great Hostas

Grown for the lush and colorful foliage, Hostas are a favorite plant for the shade garden. They grow well in containers, and if you can keep the slugs and snails away are a low maintenance plant. Having been in cultivation for 100s of year many varieties are available, however care for these shade loving perennials is fairly standard.

Like any plant, with a little extra care, soil preparation and some basic maintenance Hostas will reward you for the effort with dazzeling foliage from spring through summer.

Dividing Hosta Plants, or any plant is a great way to increase the number of plants for your own garden and improve flowering. Dividing Hostas is also part of basic care, and once divided with proper care you will have great new plants that can give to friend, it will also give them a new lease of life.

Although Hosta Plants are grown mainly for the foliage although they do have attractive flowers in the spring.

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Hosta slug damage

Pests and problems

The main pests associated with hostas are slugs and snails, which tend to find the leaves to be a very attractive meal. Hosta plants can have the old foliage removed once it has died back, this removes a hiding place for snails and slugs and also helps prevent disease.

With a move away from chemical control the alternatives to damaged foliage are slug resistent varieties and other control methods.

Some hostas seem to be more reistant to slug and snail attack than others, and as you would suspect it is those with thick tough leaves that show the most resistance. The two best are Hosta 'Sum and Substance' and Hosta. sieboliana var elegens, however they can still come under attack.

Control methods include :

  • Copper tape around pots
  • Beer traps
  • Newspaper traps
  • Midnight 'slaug and snail' catching expeditions
  • Surrounding plants with gravel so snails will not crawl over it.
  • Pine needle mulch

With all of these methods it is best to start before the new Hosta foliage emerges. Remov ethe slugs before they get a chance to start feeding.

If none of these methods work, you could always buy some geese, they love eating snails and slugs.