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Re: Fall planting

  • Subject: Re: Fall planting
  • From: Len Phillips <lenphillips@yahoo.com>
  • Date: Thu, 23 Sep 2004 11:08:03 -0700 (PDT)

I would like to take Bill's comments one step further.  I have always
advocated for fall division and planting of hostas.  However, the work
must be completed to coincide with the peak of fall tree color.  This
leaves one month for the roots of this divided or planted hosta to become

As everyone knows, in the spring the plant's energies are focused on leaf
and plant growth.  In the summer the leaves and roots work together to
store food and energy the plant needs for survival.  In the fall, the leaf
function starts to decline while the root function picks up.  The plant
seems to know that it must develop new roots to have the necessary
nutrient resources available for the spring growth surge.

You can see this if you are dividing your plants.  In the spring, new eyes
have very few, if any roots on them.  As the summer progress, the roots on
these new plants increase in size and number.  Divisions in the fall allow
for almost a maximum number of roots on each new plant.  The roots
continue growing right up until the ground is frozen.  (This usually
occurs about one month after the fall colors peak.)  As Bill indicated,
water and lots of it, as well as similar soils and sunlight, minimize the
stress that the hosta will experience during fall transplanting and division.

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