Dig, Split, Done!

I have officially conquered the weed garden (well, this one anyway…)! Last week, I showed y’all how I finally rolled up my sleeves and weeded out the garden bed behind our house, which is right next to the deck. It was looking so much spiffier! AND you helpful readers (aka- Joyce) identified my mystery plants for me as Astilbe and Ajuga. Both of these plants are quite attractive and work well in semi-shady gardens like this one, as it turns out. But I think they were so choked out by weeds and neglect that I never really appreciated them :-/ Again, you have to cut me some slack, remember I’m a little new to the whole gardening thing… So, after my work last week I had a nice spruced up garden bed, but it was still looking a little unbalanced and semi-empty.

I got the idea to check out adding ferns from some of my Pinterest searching and, as luck would have it, my dear friend Tania provided me three little ferns for F-R-E-E after our weekend visit. So, home came some little fern plants bundled up in grocery bags.

I left them just hangin’ out on top of the dirt for a night and they seemed to do just fine there until I was ready to plant.

After work the next day, I divided the three ferns into the bed, one at either end (behind the hosta on the left, all the way on the forward corner on the right) and one smack in the middle.

I was still left with a big open space on the right-ish side that I thought a hosta probably needed to fill in so that the whole bed would look a little more balanced. This is where a few random tulips come up in the spring, but the other 11 months of the year, it’s prime territory for weeds. So, forget the tulips, I decided to split a hosta and put it here.

There are a few hostas around our back yard, but the ones in this bed were already so overgrown, it seemed best (and simplest) to just split one of these. So, after a few sharp digs with the shovel around the perimeter of a section which already looked sorta separated, like it could be a nice stand-alone plant… I was able to pop up a separate division.

I also dug up one of my astilbe so that the hosta could move right and one of the astilbe could move left— creating a little better balance. With everything dug up and re-layed out, I started replanting. When I was finished, I mixed a little Miracle Gro fertilizer into a watering can and soaked all the transplanted stuff well. I’ll keep watering well until everything is well established.

This whole process took less than 45 minutes and this was the new view from the deck. Not only does it look a whole lot more cleaned up, but there is more variety now and better overall balance in the spacing of all the plants. I also moved a little of the ajuga around on this end to even things out some more.

The left side is still looking a little sparse, but we will need to give things a little TLC and time to grow up and fill in, particularly the small fern and astible in the back (like that, how I just know what all my plants are now?). Who’s a gardener now, yo?

So, for a little before-after action, here’s the shot I shared last week when I was getting down to the weed removal…

and here’s what we’re looking like today.

The best part about this mini garden transformation is the price tag— about 3 hours of work + $0. Holla!

Any other tips that might help me better tend my freshly rejuvenated garden? Anyone know about splitting up hostas— I’m not really sure if I should split the other big one just for maintenance purposes, or? Mom, much tidier than last time you saw this, right?!

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7 thoughts on “Dig, Split, Done!

  1. Looking great! You can get lots of hosta plants out of each large plant when you divide them. I usually like to do it early in the spring when they are first coming up so they have a chance that year to form the correct shape.

  2. I like to divide really large hostas in the fall when they start looking tired. First I cut the tops down so I don’t have to work around the leaves, then I dig up the plant and and divide it with a spade or a knife and plant them, I put a nice layer of mulch around them and keep them watered into the fall so the roots get a nice start and in the spring they look beautiful when the come up.

  3. Pingback: Month-In-Review | Family Style Living

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