Frequently Asked Hydrangea Questions

 What About Hydrangeas As Gift Plants 

During the Easter season, the garden centers are filled with gorgeous hydrangeas. These plants make great gifts, but DO NOT TRY TO PLANT THEM IN THE YARD AFTER THEY STOP BLOOMING. These bigleaf hydrangeas are commonly forced by nurserymen in pots for spring bloom. `Ayesha' is not hardy enough for outdoors in many areas, but makes a good container plant. Also called the `lilac hydrangea', its blossoms resemble lilacs and even have some fragrance.


Why is my Hydrangea looking so wilted, when the soil is still moist around it?

 Hydrangea leaves and blossoms may look very stressed and limp during the heat of the day; if the soil is moist, and they recover by early next morning, they are simply responding to high temperatures or hot sun.


Why Didn't My Hydrangea Bloom This Year?

 Bigleaf Hydrangea

 Oakleat Hydrangea

 Panicle Hydrangeo

  The hydrangea is a very popular flowering shrub in the home landscapes of America. This family has lots of members, so take a look at the choices. 

Pruning Young, Newly Planted Hydrangeas
By Tim Wood

With all types of hydrangea, it pays dividends to build a strong bushy plant before you worry about flowers. The first few years after being planted are the most important for pruning, because it builds the foundation for years to come. 

As a young plant, it is best to prune or pinch your plant in order to build a full bodied, well-branched plant. Every time you cut off the growing tip of a plant, you get twice as many branches and thus in the long-run, more flowers. 

If the plant is leggy when you purchased it, shear the plant back hard by 1/3  to 1/2 its original size. Once it puts on an inch or two of growth, pinch the branch tips to remove just the growing tip. This tip controls branching.  Once it is removed the buds below it will turn into two or more stems.

Once these new branches grow an inch or two, pinch the tip out again. 

You can repeat this throughout the first growing season as you are tending your garden.  Although you may sacrifice one year of bloom, this technique results in a well-branched, full-bodied plant that will have more flowers in subsequent years. 

The second season in the ground, repeat the pinching practice (or lightly shear).  Cease pruning and pinching to allow the flower buds to set.

Hydrangea Family
Species of Hydrangea Size Blossoms Basic Requirements
Bigleaf Hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla) Height 5 to 10 feet tall with a spread of about 10 feet Large, round balls, often 4 to 10 inches across in late summer or early fall. Either white or colored shades of blue or red Zones 6 through 9; best part sun and part shade; Continuously moist acidic soil (pH 5.0 to 6.5), tolerant of sand or clay and even some alkalinity.
Oakleaf Hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia) Height 3 to 6 feet tall, spread larger; In late June 4 to 12 inch cone-shaped clusters over 1 foot long, start green, then white and in fall pink or purplish. Zones 5 through 8; Best part sun and part shade; Continuously moist acidic soil (pH 5.0 to 6.5), tolerant of sand or clay and even some alkalinity.
Panicle Hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata) Height 10 to 30 feet depending on variety, usually 10 to 12 feet wide In midsummer 6 to 10 inch white pyramidal clusters Zone 3 through 7; Full sun, no shade, moist, acidic soil (pH 5.0 to 6.5) tolerant of sand or clay and only a little bit of alkalinity.
Sawtooth Hydrangea (Hydrangea serrata) Height: 4 ft Spread: 4 Blue or pink flowers Zones 5 through 8; full sun or part shade; sun or part shade
Smooth Hydrangea (Hydrangea arborescens) Height: 5 ft Spread: 5 ft Midsummer first green then white and dry brown

Zones 3 through 9; sun or shade






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