When is the Best Time to Plant Hostas for Perfect Results

Written by

William Golder


Dorian Goodwin

when is the best time to plant hostas

With broad, impressive foliage featuring a wide range of colors, hostas are popular garden perennials.

They are relatively easy to care for, making them ideal for beginners and experienced gardeners alike. If you’re wondering, “When is the best time to plant hostas?” then you are in the right place, as we will discuss that along with useful hostas planting tips below.

The best time of year to plant hostas is in spring, from March to May or in fall, from August to September, depending on your planting zone and the variety of hosta you are planning to grow.

Best Time to Grow Hostas


Hostas can withstand temperatures in hardiness zones 3 to 9.

Therefore, they are able to thrive in states under zone 3 like Wisconsin and Maine, in Ohio and in Michigan under zones 5 and 6, in zone 7 in Missouri, in certain areas in NC under zone 8, and lastly, in states under zone 9 such as South Carolina and Texas.

While they are hardy plants, it is still necessary to learn when to plant hostas to grow them successfully.

When should hostas be planted in spring? The answer is to grow them in the spring season after the last frost, which is often from late March up to May.

Fall season planting is also viable, but be sure to get them in the ground 4 to 6 weeks before the first fall frost in your area. Doing so allows the plants to establish their roots before going dormant in the winter.

Planting hostas in the summer is usually not recommended as they will need much more watering and care due to the high temperatures.

How to Plant?


Hostas can be transplanted in your garden from a pot or from bare root divisions. If you want to know how to plant hostas, check out the hosta planting guide below to get started.

  1. Hostas generally love being in the shade. With that said, you need to select an area in your garden that receives filtered shade.
  2. Ensure that your soil is fertile and well-
  3. If you are planting bare-root divisions, put them in the ground with the crown at soil level and the growing leaves visible above ground.
  4. If you are transplanting from pots, position them in the soil following the same This is also more preferable than the previous method if you’re gardening in the fall.
  5. After planting, water the area thoroughly and continue irrigating regularly once a week or more as the temperatures get warmer.

How to Take Care of Hostas?


1. Soil

Whether you plant them in your garden or in a pot, hostas can tolerate almost any type of soil. However, for a healthier plant, it is best to grow them in rich, well-drained soil with a pH of 6.5 to 7.

2. Watering

Hostas need deep watering at regular intervals and may require more moisture if they are planted in a sunny spot or if the temperatures are warm. At least 1 inch of water a week is enough to keep hostas thriving.

3. Fertilizer

Feeding hostas with a nutrient-rich fertilizer may be done twice in their growing season – first is during spring as the leaves emerge, and the second time is just before they produce flowers. A slow-release 10-10-10 is often the best choice, barring the existence of any soil test.

4. Winter Protection

Since hostas are cold-hardy, winter protection might not be necessary, but if your area experiences sudden bouts of extremely cold temperatures, adding mulch to your plants might be the best thing to do.

Tips for Dividing Hostas


You can divide hostas if you intend to make more hostas or want them to appear more neat. Here are some tips when dividing hostas:

  1. It is ideal to divide hostas in spring, when the growing tip emerges from the ground and the plant is five years old.
  2. Using a clean knife or shovel, divide the plant into sections. Ensure that a healthy set of roots and at least one eye are present in all plant divisions.
  3. Space them out properly to make room for their foliage to grow. Plant hosta bulbs in the soil the same as before.
  4. Water the newly-planted hostas thoroughly.

Frequently Asked Questions

How late can you plant hostas?

For fall planting, it is recommended to get hostas in the ground about 4 to 6 weeks before the first fall frost. Depending on the region, it may be possible to plant as late as early November.

Where is the best place to plant hostas?

These plants generally prefer being in the shade and hence, the best place to plant hostas is an area that receives filtered shade and not direct sunlight.

Still, it is best to check the specific needs of the variety that you are planting, as sunlight enhances the color of foliage of some cultivars while others need to be kept under shade as they have leaves that are quick to burn.

Do hostas prefer sun or shade?

Most hostas prefer being under filtered shade; some like Frances Williams and Big Daddy can even survive in deep shade. To know the best location for your hosta, check the specific needs of the variety you are planting.


Hostas are ornamental plants that can add stunning color to your space or garden. Hopefully, we have answered your question “When is the best time to plant hostas?” and have provided you with insights on the optimum growing conditions for hostas.

Once you follow these recommendations, you will surely grow some healthy and vibrant hostas.

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