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The Best Time to Transplant Hostas

The Best Time to Transplant Hostas

Hostas are a beautiful and beloved plant around the world because of their wide foliage and ability to survive in shady conditions. They can be planted almost everywhere and grow rapidly while also being durable, making them a favorite for growth and transplanting. These perennials require little attention, but transplanting is a procedure where you will need to focus on the hostas to ensure they thrive in a new location. 

Unfortunately, few realize there actually is a best time to transplant hostas, especially for those living in regions with harsh winters and hot summers. Many try to do so in the middle of summer, which is one of the worst times to move any plant. Instead, you should wait until late spring or early fall, when the plant doesn’t have its full roots. Performing the procedure at this time ensures the hosta grows healthy and strong, and that you can enjoy amazing foliage without fear of decay and death. 

The Most Common Hostas

Before transplanting, make sure you know what type of hosta you have. Although they all bear certain similarities, including being hardy and having gorgeous foliage, some varieties are more durable than others. This durability can affect the success of a transplant. 


Varieties mainly describe what color a hosta is and how large it will become. There are thus miniature, average, and big hostas as well as a type called variegated, which produces leaves with multiple color stripes. It’s important to know type before transplanting because you don’t want to put a hosta in too big or small of space because this will affect overall growth and development. 

In general, most hostas will grow to be about 12 in. tall and around 36-48 in. wide, so prepare for this measurement. Large hostas can be up to 36 in. tall and grow as wide as 114 in., and you definitely don’t want to put those in a small location. 

Where to Grow Hostas

One of the reasons hostas are so popular is that they can be grown in almost any environment, making them a perennial favorite for adding a splash of color and greenery to any garden. Hostas grow best in evenly moist soil full of nutrients, with an emphasis on humus. They need at least partial shade, and some can even grow when entirely blocked from the sun, again making them a favorite in colder environments.

The Best Time to Transplant Hostas

Green-leaved hostas are the most tolerant to shade, while many variegated varieties will prefer more sunlight. Large hostas work well in most environments, while mini versions might require a better ratio of sun to shade – usually around 50/50. If you plant a blue-leaved hosta in the sun, the leaves will bleach and become green, so avoid doing so if you want to maintain the plant’s blue color. 

If your soil is uncommonly dry, consider planting hosta varieties with waxy leaves instead of thin ones. Waxy hostas are better at maintaining moisture and will survive a lot longer than their thinner counterparts. Most hostas are also disease resistant but are prone to getting slugs, so remember to tend to them regularly. These plants grow well around native wildflowers, so consider keeping some in the garden for pops of color and the health of the hosta.

When is the Best Time to Transplant Hostas?

There are actually two times when it is acceptable to transplant a hosta: late spring and early fall. During both of these periods, the soil is warm enough that the roots do not struggle and are capable of expanding and growing. Depending on your region, you might want to time the transplant to the period before seasonal rains, as the hostas will benefit from the extra rainfall.

Transplanting is best reserved for hostas that you don’t want to grow too large. These hardy plants are capable of expanding to fill any area in which they are left, and they grow best when left alone. If you worry about the plant getting too big, move it to a smaller location. Otherwise, you could end up stunting the hostas growth by moving it too frequently. 

The Best Time to Transplant Hostas

When you’re ready to transplant, be sure to mix good organic matter in the soil of the new location. This will enrich the plot with essential nutrients for the roots, which will appreciate the extra help you give it and will form stronger connections in the new place. Try to get as much of the root ball as possible of the hosta when you want to move it, and be sure to dig a wide and deep hole that will cover the roots completely. Always water well right after the transplant.

Hosta Care Tips

Once a hosta is planted, it needs surprisingly little care. The most important step is keeping the soil moist and damp but not entirely wet. Too much water can drown the roots and stunt future growth. You also need to make sure the soil pH is neutral and that there are enough nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus to promote healthy growth.

If you’re unsure what you can do on a regular basis to help a transplanted hosta, consider following these steps:

  1. Place mulch around the hosta to help it maintain moisture
  2. Remove brown leaves and weeds around the hosta to keep away slugs and snails
  3. Remove flower stalks after they’ve bloomed to facilitate new growth
  4. Apply a slow-release fertilizer during the spring to guarantee regular nutrition

Through these steps, any hosta can thrive and grow under just about any conditions. Just remember to ensure each plant gets enough shade and to only transplant during late spring or early autumn.


Hostas are perhaps the easiest plant to transplant. These broad leaved, beautiful perennials require little care and maintenance and can sprout roots that go 18 in. deep. All they need to survive is some warm soil, a little moisture, and enough shade to keep the leaves shielded from the sun. Just don’t get excited and try to transplant in the middle of summer – wait until fall to give your hostas the best chance for survival.


How do you move hostas without killing them?

First, find a container that has ample drainage holes in the bottom. Fill the container half way with moist potting mix and add water until it is fully soaked. Place your hostas in the container and sprinkle some dry leaves on top of them so they will remain damp throughout the process. Fill the rest of your container with more moist potting mix and water so that it stays moist as well but don't drown your plants in too much water.

Are hostas sun tolerant?

Hostas are known to be sun tolerant, but they need to get some protection from the hot sun. They can be placed in shade during the hottest hours of the day or they can be watered regularly to prevent them from getting dehydrated and wilting.

Hostas thrive in moist, humid environments and most do not need direct sunlight. They enjoy cooler temperatures and moist soil. But their leaves will turn brown if the plant is exposed to direct sunlight for too long or if it does not receive enough water. As a result, hostas should be watered often and placed in cool shady spots when it's sunny outside.

Will hostas grow in full shade?

Some people believe that hostas need to be planted in full sun to thrive. However, this is not true. They can handle partial shade or even dappled shade.

Many gardeners choose to plant them in dappled or partially shaded locations because they are easier to care for and enjoy the effect of a cool, shady place without the cost of a greenhouse or other expensive home growing equipment.

Can I dig up hostas and replant?

If you are thinking of digging up hostas and replant them, make sure to take note of the following before doing so.

It is difficult to grow new plants from the roots of a plant that has been dug out, but it is possible. Make sure to dig out only the soil that has been around the plant, not the entire root ball. It is best to wait for two years before replanting hostas in a new location.

Digging up plants can be done in two ways: with a shovel or with your hands. If you are short on time and can't remove all of the roots, then try using a shovel first and if it doesn't work use your hands instead.

Where is the best place to plant hostas?

The best place to plant your hosta is in a well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter. It should be planted with the crown of the bulb about 3/4" below ground level. This will allow for new roots to grow and for the flower stalks to reach their full height.

Other places you can place your hostas include:

-the back of a slope, where water will naturally run down

-in an area that receives partial or full sunlight all day long, without having direct exposure to intense sunlight.

Do hostas need a lot of water?

Hostas are generally considered to be easy to grow and care for. They don't need much water, but they do need regular watering.

Can hostas get too much sun?

Hostas are popular because they are a versatile plant that can tolerate many conditions, including light shade and partial sunlight. They can even grow in locations with poor soil quality. However, these plants also need to be protected from direct sunlight and temperatures above 80 degrees Fahrenheit. If you live in an area where temperatures get too hot for your hosta, it is time to move them indoors or find a different home for them.

Should I mist my hosta?

When it comes to gardening, hosts are incredibly important. They help your plants grow and flourish. If you mist your hosta, you need to make sure that the plant doesn't get too wet and has enough air circulation around the roots.

Mist your hostas! They'll love it.