I have several hostas planted under my ash tree but they don't seem to grow, they just put on new plants. Should I plant them where they can get some sun and shade? Also how do I separate them and when should I transplant them in a new spot? I live in zone 3 in northeastern Mo. and we haven't had much rain but have been trying to water all my flowers when I can since I am disabled [trouble walking without falling] Thanks, Dixie Pierce
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

I don't quite understand what you mean by "they won't grow, just put on new plants". That sounds like they are growing, but perhaps you were expecting that the leaves would get huge and the plants taller? As long as they look healthy and are spreading a little, I don't thik you have a problem. However you may just have smaller-growing varieties than you had anticipated. Hostas like to be kept growing in moist soil and do not enjoy drying out, so perhaps your lack of rain has affected them. Of course the ash tree is sucking up all the available moisture when it does rain. I suggest moving them to a less dry place. Perhaps you can get someone to prepare a nice partially shaded bed for them with plenty of compost in the soil to retain what rain falls. When you dig the plants (water them the night before) take a fairly large clump and then separate the individual crowns from each other. If the plants are robust you can just take a spade and split the plants into two or more pieces before replanting. Try to do this on a cloudy day in fall while the ground is still warm from the summer.

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