How To Grow Hydrangeas

We all love those beautiful, large flower clusters that bloom bright pinks and blues.  Some of them have just a hint of color or are creamy white. But no matter what color they bare, hydrangeas look gorgeous next to their full, bright green foliage. To plant these beauties can be a trick at times, but under the right conditions, enough water, and sufficient sunlight, you will be all set!

Pictured Above: Glowing Embers Hydrangea looking gorgeous in full bloom
Pictured Above: Glowing Embers Hydrangea looking gorgeous in full bloom

First of all, find the right spot. Most hydrangea varieties like morning sun and afternoon shade, but with the many different varieties, this can be fairly flexible. Hydrangea paniculata can take full sun and Hydrangea quercifolia can take more shade than other species.

The region you live in will also effect the amount of sun needed. If you live farther north, your hydrangea will take more sun. Likewise, the father south you live, the less sun it will need. Almost all hydrangeas will never do well in full shade, so your best option is part sun and part shade.

Pictured Above: Hydrangea Incrediball in full bloom.
Pictured Above: Hydrangea Incrediball in full bloom.

Now for the flower color. Hydrangea macrophylla such as ‘Endless Summer’ can change colors to a deep blue, bright pink, or pastel color, depending on the amount of fertilizer you use. Other varieties, such as ‘Limelight’, ‘Incrediball’ and ‘Glowing Embers’ can not be changed. Hydrangeas in a container are easier to change the color than when planted in the ground. If pink is the desired color, you don’t want aluminum in your soil. Use a high phosphorous fertilizer, or garden lime to keep the aluminum level down. Your soil Ph should be between 6.0-6.2 for pink flowers. For a blue color, your soil should have aluminum with a Ph between 5.2-5.5. Adding aluminum sulfate, or using a fertilizer high in potassium will contribute to a blue color.

Pictured Above: Hydrangea Endless summer blooming light blue flowers.
Pictured Above: Hydrangea Endless summer blooming light blue flowers.

Hydrangeas need a lot of water, hence their latin prefix hydra. If your hydrangea’s leaves and flowers are wilting a little, it probably just needs a drink. Enjoy growing beautiful hydrangeas!

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