Tips for Growing Hydrangeas
When they’re flowering, hydrangeas be one of the most beautiful and rewarding landscape plants, but they can also be one of the most frustrating when they refuse to bloom. Here are some simple but important tips to help your hydrangea perform it’s best.
Hydrangeas do best in morning sun with afternoon or dappled shade. Too much sun and they’ll need frequent watering, too little sun and they’ll have fewer flowers. They prefer an organic, dark, loamy soil. Amend soil with a good quality compost planting mix to increase organic matter in the soil. Top dress with a 2-3 inch layer of mulch to insulate the roots an to help retain moisture in the soil. For more growth and more flowers, fertilize with a balanced fertilizer every spring.
Any pruning of macrophylla hydrangeas should always be done by the end of July to prevent cutting off next years flower buds. To revitalize older plants, thin them out by cutting some of the older stems. To reduce the overall size, cut above a set of leaves.
The flower buds on both traditional and reblooming hydrangeasneed protection from winter and early-spring freezes. Mound straw, mulch or leaves around the base and stems. Remove this mound at the end of April.
For many macrophylla and lacecap hydrangeas, their flower color depends on the acidity of the soil.
- For blue flowers, the soil needs to acidic. Aluminum Sulfate can be added to increase the acidity of the soil.
- For pink and red flowers, the soil needs to be alkaline. Lime can be added to decrease the acidity of the soil.