Planting Your Hydrangea:.
♦ Planting your hydrangeas in early spring or in the fall is ideal.
♦ If you plant them in the summer, they need a lot more water in the beginning to establish the root system.
♦ When you are planting a hydrangea, remember that the blooms and stems must be protected from strong winds and the hot afternoon sun.
Avoid planting in open areas where strong winds could break stems with flowers on them.
Avoid Trees – Don’t plant hydrangeas directly under trees. They don’t like competing for moisture and nutrients. Aggressive tree roots will crowd them.
♦ Choose a good garden soil, moist and high in organic matter, to give your hydrangea a strong start. Make sure your plant has good drainage. If the soil is too wet, the roots might rot, and the plant will die.
♦ The location should be sunny or partly shaded (planting on the eastern side of a building ensures that, in the afternoon, when the sun is at its hottest, your plants are in the shade).
♦ If the pH of your soil is too high (alkaline), it can be reduced (made more acidic) by the addition of one tablespoon or more of Aluminum Sulfate per plant – this will make your flowers a deeper blue. Coffee grounds and tea bags can be used as a mulch around hydrangeas. It changes the pH of the soil and makes the pink ones turn to blue.
To know more about changing hydrangeas colour, check the boxes below!
Maintenance (General Hydrangea Care):
♦ An annual mulch of compost is beneficial. In very cold or exposed locations, mound with soil and mulch the base of the plant with pine needles or leaves.
♦ Water deeply once a week, and maybe more, if the weather is particularly hot or dry.
♦ Most varieties do well in full sun to part shade, as long as they are planted in moist, rich soil.
♦ Hydrangea fertilization needs vary greatly, depending on your intended bloom color. Certain elements of the fertilizer affect the soil pH, which is a major determinant of bloom color in the pink/blue hydrangea varieties.
♦ Most species require little pruning except the removal of dead flower heads after blooming or in early spring.
♦ For Hydrangea arborescens (‘Annabelle’), prune the previous year’s flowering wood to the ground in early spring. For Hydrangea macrophylla (mopeheads and lacecaps) and Hydrangea serrata (Oakleaf Hydrangea), thin out 2 or 3 year old flowering shoots at ground level to promote vigorous new growth. Hydrangea petiolaris (Climbing Hydrangea) should be pruned only for aesthetics.
For more information about ‘pruning’, check the box below.