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Empress Wu Hosta is taking over

ToshijelmbergToshijelmberg Gloucester, Massachusetts USAPosts: 6
Hello all. I have what I think is an Empress Wu Hosta that has always been big but it's now completely taking over. I would like to divide it but am apprehensive as it's so large. This is a 
picture of a different one grown in New Hampshire, USA and mine is larger by 1/3.
Any suggestions for dividing would be greatly appreciated. 
I also live in the New England, USA. It's getting cold and I think a good time to divide?
Thank you for any advice
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Posts

  • ToshijelmbergToshijelmberg Gloucester, Massachusetts USAPosts: 6
    edited October 2019
    Will add a photo of mine when I am home from work.
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 27,632
    That's a stunner so good luck with yours.

    I have always found that hostas sulk and even die if divided in autumn, especially in my lastgarden where winter was long, cold and wet.

    Far better to wait till spring and do it the minute you first see those bullet shaped buds of new foliage starting to appear.   They are far more likely to grow away well then tho I also found that large leaved hostas usually produce smaller leaves the first year after division.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • ToshijelmbergToshijelmberg Gloucester, Massachusetts USAPosts: 6

    This is her, so sad looking...more than half gone for the season and I’ve cut her back several times to rid her of the rotten leaves (and our pup). 

    Thank you for the suggestion to divide in spring. Sound advice @Obelixx
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 27,632
    I generally remove tired or chewed leaves from hostas thru the season.  It makes them look better and removes cover for slimesters like slugs and snails.   My dogs don't help tho.  
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • ToshijelmbergToshijelmberg Gloucester, Massachusetts USAPosts: 6
    @Obelixx yes. I do too and am just getting ready to take her down completely for the winter.  I must say that this past year was particularly bad for slugs her in the north east of New England! Huge Tiger slugs...yuck!
  • amancalledgeorgeamancalledgeorge South LondonPosts: 2,302
    Cute doggy @Toshijelmberg 😉
    To Plant a Garden is to Believe in Tomorrow
  • BrexiteerBrexiteer Birmingham Posts: 955
    Cute doggy @Toshijelmberg 😉
    😉😉😉😉
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,463
    Hi @Toshijelmberg - General advice is autumn [fall] or spring, but it usually depends on your own conditions, as @Obelixx describes, and that will determine the best time for you. Many people prefer spring when plants want to grow anyway, and some prefer autumn as the ground can be warmer, and plants establish well, but severe temps and weather conditions will affect that timing. 
    With Hostas, I haven't noticed too much difference in growth rates, or survival, when they're divided, and because our season [here where I am ] starts a bit later, I can usually divide them in May or even later.
    Like you, the slugs and snails are a major problem, so I've given up with them now. I'm never finished removing the slimy, dog eared foliage!
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,696

    This is her, so sad looking...more than half gone for the season and I’ve cut her back several times to rid her of the rotten leaves (and our pup). 

    Thank you for the suggestion to divide in spring. Sound advice @Obelixx
    She's barely got into her stride yet, bless'er. There seems plenty of room around it. If it were mine, I'd leave it another season, but if you want to split it, I'd do as @Obelixx says and wait until you see nice big fat "bullets" next Spring before dividing it.
    Devon.
  • ToshijelmbergToshijelmberg Gloucester, Massachusetts USAPosts: 6
    Hi @Fairygirl thank you for you post. I have divided in autumn and spring with my other varieties of hosta with no issues but this gal is much larger. She’s also been in that spot for more than 10 years with no divisions. 

    Hi @Hostafan1 thank you for the advice as well...my picture does her no justice as I’ve cut her back several times in the past month or so. At full size her leaves come almost to the rock border nearer the patio and right up to the peony’s seen in the picture at top and top right. I wish I could find the earlier picture from summer (the “cloud” has it and of course I haven’t a clue how to get it back down!”

    Regardless, I’ll take the advice given by you all and wait for spring.  :)

    @BirminghamMarc1972
    @amancalledgeorge
    thank you  :)
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