The 6 Best Fertilizers for Hostas

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If you want the prettiest and healthiest hostas, don’t just buy any fertilizer – you’ll need the best one. Too many products make claims that are untrue. The mistake many people make is they just buy any brand they find at their local gardening store. Instead, you should buy a product with the proper N-P-K ratio and quality ingredients.

Not too long ago, there were not many options for fertilizers on the market. You had to trust local shops that the products they were selling were providing appropriate nutrients. Fortunately, the times have changed and with online shopping there are a plethora of options at your fingertips. With so many different options, it is still difficult, but in a different manner. It is hard to find a quality product because there are so many different ones to sift through.

We simplify things for you. Keep reading for our recommendations for quality products.

Comparing Our Top 3 Recommendations

Best fertilizer for hostas

At A Glance

These products all use quality ingredients and are much better than the others on the market. Please keep reading below to learn more about each one. 

Nutrients for hostas

Best Fertilizers for Hostas

Osmocote Smart-Release Plant Food Flower & Vegetable

This is a smart release product using Osmocote’s patented formula. It improves the taste of vegetables, and for bigger, more colorful blooms on ornamentals. It also builds a strong root system and promotes vigorous top growth. Osmocote has developed a special coating on this granular product that is activated by water. With every watering or rainfall, the nutrients will slowly seep out into the root zones of your plant.

Lilly Miller All Purpose Planting And Growing Food

Use Lilly Miller when you are planting hostas and other young plants in the garden to get them off to a great start. You’ll get lush, steady growth from this slow-release formula. This granular product contains a wide range of minerals. It contains the proper nutrient ratios for many ornamentals including hostas.

EarthPods Premium Indoor Plant Food – Easy Organic Spikes

Earthpods uses earthworm technology to provide these unique pellet-type spikes. The spikes come in many different types of formulation. We recommend the all purpose spikes for your hostas. These easy-to-use capsules are activated by water. They promote root growth and also make leaves shinier and healthier. Each package comes with 100 capsules. There is no measuring required and no messy liquids. All you have to do is insert a capsule into the root zone as directed on the packaging. The nutrients slowly gets absorbed by the plant. It is a slow-release product that will provide a large range of nutrients to your plants.

Jobe’s Organics Annuals & Perennials Granular Plant Food

Jobe’s Granular plant food is a great product. It can be incorporated into the soil when you are first planting your perennial hosta bed or applied as a side dressing to established plants. The product does not include any synthetic chemicals. If you are using this product, feed every four to eight weeks, starting in the spring when the hostas start to grow. It is an all-natural product. Simply follow directions on the resealable bag for the proper amount to mix into the soil.

Burpee Natural Organic Granular Plant Food

Burpee’s Natural Organic Granular product is an all-purpose, organic granular nutrient. It can be added to your hosta bed. Spread it around to roots by it into the top layer of soil as plants first appear in spring. The product will keep your plants healthy and growing. This product contains a balance of macro and micronutrients for all your needs. Apply it as directed on the packaging, usually two to three times per year as needed.

Fox Farm Grow Big Liquid Concentrate Fertilizer

Fox Farm’s liquid concentrate is exactly that, a liquid mix nutrients. This is the only liquid mix on this list. You should use this concentrate by mixing as directed on the packaging and feeding your plants about six weeks after they have emerged from the ground or after planting. This will result in bigger, healthier leaves.


Helpful Growing Tips

Hostas are some of the most popular perennials in the world. They are very easy to grow and are beautiful when raised properly. They are versatile and come in a variety of colors and leaf shapes. Let’s talk about some growing tips

Proper Nutrients and N-P-K Ratio

The proper N-P-K ratio for hostas is an N-P-K ratio of 1-1-1. Apply the fertilizer around the base of your plant, but away from the leaves and the crown as this can cause burn. Using a fertilizer with slow release nitrogen is very beneficial because they like steady, continual release of nitrogen and nutrients. Other nutrients to make sure to supplement your plants with is magnesium, which can easily be found in the pharmacy in the form of Epsom salts.  Hostas flourish when given magnesium, so mixing magnesium in the water that you use to water them will be very beneficial. You can mix a couple of tablespoons of Epsom salts into the water that you will be using for feedings.

Do Not Overfeed

Make sure to follow the instructions on the product that you buy and do not overfeed. Too much nutrients can be as bad as too little, as it can lead to burning of the plant’s roots.

Best fertilizers for Hostas

Plenty of Sunlight

Because hostas are very versatile, they can tolerate shaded areas. However, they flourish and grow much faster with more exposure to sun. Ideally you want to allow your plant to have about 5-6 hours of sun exposure per day.

Different Types

There are so many different types of hostas out there – gracillima, crispula, halcyon, guacamole, august moon, and alligator alley – just to name a few. Check out this site to see some of the different types of hostas. You might want to look around to see what most suits your taste and environment. 

Additional tips

Check out these additional tips from this Youtube video (not created or owned by GreenPinky)

Bottom Line

Again, I recommend buying the Osmocote’s fertilizer. Don’t fall into all the market hype of different fertilizers that do not provide quality ingredients to your ingredients. If you end up getting a fertilizer that is not on this list make sure to at least get one with the proper N-P-K ratio.

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About the author: Carley Miller is a horticultural expert at TheGreenPinky. She previously owned a landscaping business for 25 years and worked at a local garden center for 10 years.

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