Dividing Hostas

Hi all, I'm seeking advice. I'm new to gardening. I have many hostas in my garden and I'm looking to divide/moved some to another area in the garden. How do I divide it? Do I have to get it from the root? I tried but found it very difficult.
Thanks in advance for any advice.
"New to Gardening"
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It's really very easy. The quickest way I've found is to use one of those bulb planter hand tools like this one:
http://www.santarosagardens.com/ProductImages/tierra/bulb-planter-1.jpg
You simply drive it into the rootmass, being at least slightly careful to get 3-5 shoots of growth. You also have the added benefit of being able to pop out the exact size whole you need into which you will transplant your division.
You can also use a sharp spade, a 'hori hori' digging tool, a big serrated knife...
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David J. Bockman, Fairfax, VA (USDA Hardiness Zone 7)
email: snipped-for-privacy@beyondgardening.com
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My method is to pry the entire hosta from the soil and rest it on top of a milk crate and then cut the entire mass in half with a machete and a hammer or a bread knife. If the clump is large you can then quarter it. A good size division will have 6 or 8 leaves and a solid mass of root. Plant the divisions and water them well.
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While you can divide hosta nearly anytime, I have the best luck with them in the spring, just before the leaves start to unroll.
The primary method I use is to use a shovel to dig out the entire plant. You need to insert the shovel about 4-6 inches from the periphery of the plant. If it is well established, you may need to insert the shovel in several places to loosen the plant. You can then get the shovel under the plant and start prying. To make the job easier, water well the night before you want to dig the plant. After it is out of the ground, I use a Japanese folding saw or a large serrated kitchen knife (8 - 10 inches) and cut the plant into segment. Try to position the knife so it damages the fewest stems. I cut the plant in half and then split each half, and continue until you have new clumps the size you desire. Larger clumps will yield fewer large plants. I seldom divide even a large plant into more than six or eight pieces, especial if it has already leafed out.
Before dividing the plant, make sure the area where you want to plant the divisions is prepped. I try to dig a hole or trench that is at least twice as wide and deep as the root mass I will plant. I like to mix a lot of organic matter (compost, peat, etc.) in with the soil and add a handful of high phosphate fertilizer. Plant the division at the same level they were originally and water well. Unless you are in a very cool area, I would expect some wilting. If they are fully leafed out, then they will look shabby for the rest of the season. I would think about holing off until fall or may early next spring.
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Thanks to all for taking the time to respond. I sincerelly appreciate it.
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yard, and from time to time I use a spade to cut, and dig up an entire section, root and all, preferably with soil around the roots, and put them in pots and keep them moist. I have done that many a time to please my kids or friends. Any time of the year really ! Likewise, to move them to another spot in the garden. We have lots of shade and they seem to thrive there year after year. Good luck ! Ben
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My wife digs them up then uses an old butchers saw but any saw such as one you would use to trim a tree limb (bow saw) would work, sure is faster than knife or etc. and works well. We used an electric chain saw on one occasion but it's kind of hard on the chain saw. RM~
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Ann, gardening in Zone 6a
South of Boston, Massachusetts
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