ABSENCE MAKES THE HEART GROW FONDER FOR OUR BELOVED HYDRANGEAS
Many customers have recently come into the garden center so excited that their blue hydrangeas are in bud and bloom for the first time in two or three years. This past couple of years so many customers were wondering why and if they did something wrong. Rest assured that in most cases it is nothing that we have done wrong. The fault may well lie with heavy and late snows, as well as frigid temperatures.
Let me explain in greater detail so that you can understand what had happened to hydrangeas:
Did you know that there are five different types of hydrangeas?
IT’S VERY IMPORTANT TO KNOW THE FAMILY TYPE OF HYDRANGEA THAT YOU WANT TO PURCHASE OR HAVE IN YOUR LANDSCAPE. So, when you plant, be sure to save the label!! That way, when it comes time to prune (if needed) you can do it correctly without sacrificing the beautiful blooms.
The common blue flowering hydrangea falls in the H. macrophylla family. The common names are “mop head” or “big leaf” hydrangea. Flower buds of this hydrangea are formed between July and October and carried through the winter months. Unfortunately, our harsh winters have killed this bloom wood which leads to only green growth and no blooms in the spring. Also, if this type of hydrangea needs to be pruned then the only time to prune is once the flowers begin to fade in late spring – no other time!! I need to go on record stating that improper pruning can be another culprit for no blooms on hydrangea mop heads. Unfortunately, some customers prune in early spring and cut off the blooming wood. Don’t be this customer.
Let’s talk about planting location for hydrangeas. Hydrangeas are woodland plants. They prefer to be in consistently moist, well-drained, humus-rich soil. Be careful, too much shade can result in reduced bloom production. Also, hydrangeas do NOT like to be planted out in the open and exposed to the elements. They would rather be planted as a foundation plant near a protected wall that provides a windbreak and protection from severe weather.
Another topic for our mop head hydrangeas – the color of the bloom is dictated by the pH level of the soil. You need an acidic base soil for the blue flowers and an alkaline base soil for pink flowers.
I hope I have not made things more confusing.
Earlier I mentioned that we have different family types of hydrangeas. Here is a list:
Hydrangea anolmala petiolaris – Climbing hydrangea
Hydrangea arborescens – Smooth hydrangea (native)
- Bella Anna (pink)
Hydrangea macrophylla – Bigleaf hydrangea
- Nikko Blue
- Pretty in Pink / Pretty in Red
- Pia (dwarf)
- Mariesii (lace cap)
- Endless Summer (remontant)
- Twist-n-shout (remontant)
Hydrangea paniculata – Panicle hydrangea
Hydrangea quecifolia – Oakleaf hydrangea
Now is a great time to come see us and shop our excellent selection of hydrangeas.
Plant a little happiness!!!