What time of year is the best time to divide day lilies and hostas?

Asked October 9, 2014, 10:51 PM EDT

What time of year is the best time to divide day lilies and hostas, is it better to divide them before or after a hard frost?
Also, is there a good way to divide them i.e., with a flat sided spade, or with a hand tool?
What is the approx. size for each divided section? Thank you.

Anoka County Minnesota

1 Response

The best times to divide daylily are early spring or immediately after flowering. Plants divided in the spring may not bloom the same summer. Divisions should have two to three stems or fans of leaves with all roots attached. Make divisions by digging the entire plant and gently pulling the fans apart. Cut the foliage back, leaving only five or six inches. Place the plant in the soil so the crown is one inch below the ground line. A winter mulch of straw or shredded leaves helps ensure against winter injury for plants. Daylilies can be divided every three to four years. http://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/yard-garden/flowers/growing-daylilies/

Spring is the best time to divide hosta. Most are divided in spring as the growing tips start to emerge from the ground, Dig up the clump and divide into sections with a sharp shovel or knife. In smaller plants or sections, it may be possible to gently pull apart the plants. Hostas can also be divided later in early fall. http://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/yard-garden/landscaping/hostas/

Established plants require pitch forks or showels.