Sunday, July 11, 2010

Lets talk about….Hydrangeas

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As you might know, I am a bit obsessed about hydrangeas.  This is Pinky Winky, my must have from last year.  Photo from last year too, mine is still white and has some browning on the blooms, hoping this is from too much watering with the hose since it has been so dry, but it is a beautiful plant none the less.
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I especially like the new stronger stemmed ones like my Limelight.  It is a show stopper right now…. much better than I even thought it would be.  I whole heartedly suggest you add this shrub to your garden somewhere, I did not realize how nice the creamy green blooms look with just about any color scheme.  I will be doing cuttings soon so maybe I can grow some babies of this one.
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Okay, I have a few new ones and I am wondering if any of you grew them…. the first one is Pink Diamond…. it said on the web…. “It produces both sterile and fertile flowers.”  Does that mean it self seeds?  I have never had one do that, and if it does look like that, wow…  Mine has about 8 blooms forming on it now.  Picture is from the web.
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This is another of my new ones I know nothing about, Raspberry Parfait or also called Harlequin Hydrangea.  Pics and info from the web, mine is not blooming yet….
“This hydrangea is a must for all collectors or those that need just one. The blooms are two colors of vibrant pink to purple with white borders - just like an angel's halo. We love this unusual and eye-catching specimen and we barely grow enough for the demand.”
The bloom is very tender and does not do well in any afternoon sun.” Okay, what does that mean, you never get them or the look like you know what….   You see I have got into this trouble before, enter case in point my variegated hydrangeas….
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Yes, I know this picture looks beautiful, but my Light O’ Day has been a challenge.  I think this plant might also be called 'Variegata', at least I cannot tell the difference between the two.  My plant is two years plus old and these are the first blooms.  I am so happy to see them because it was in jeopardy of getting moved to the back of the border.
I have two of them, on opposite sides of one of my big rocks…. and one is in bloom and the other is growing like crazy and loosing it variegated look, with no blooms.  Foliage is fine, but I want some color too.  A gardening friend has hers, which is about 5 yrs old, in full shade and it has never bloomed.  My two do get a bit of morning sun, so maybe that is the key, but none the less after reading remarks on Dave’s Garden, I think this is a tough one to get to bloom repeatedly.  And you know, I like easy, I am sorry, but I love the ones that do well with little care.  No, I am not pulling them out, but enjoying the one and hoping the other takes the hint….  “See how pretty your sister is blooming?  You can do that too next year…”
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But this beauty bloomed her heart out for me….  my Nikko Blue (which is pink for me) was the best it has ever been.  When the garden tour was here it was picture perfect pink and green blooms.  Last year the frost got every single bloom and I missed her so much.  Yes, I think roses and hydrangeas must be girls… lol.  But I didn’t really give her enough room where she is at.  I recently removed all the plants around her and today I am going to cut here back just a bit in the front for my sidewalk.  It is about 4 years old and I thought it would die back last winter and it did not at all, so now she is a bit in the sidewalk. 
It said online that if I cut mopheads back before August 1st they would still make blooms for next year.  I am not going to be too aggressive, but I wish I would have put this one in a bigger area, by fault, but she has a prime spot!
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This is my Cityline Paris Hydrangea, the only time it has bloomed and that was two years ago.  I am so disappointed.  I think I gave $20 for this one at Lowes and wanted it so badly, it is a dwarf and it still is, no more than 16 inches tall and lots of green, healthy foliage…. but no blooms for the last two years.  It is in morning sun only, north side… and I cannot figure out why it is not blooming.
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Tree Hydrangea or Grandiflora has beautiful smallish white blooms the are very crisp and beautiful to photograph.  I had purchased these from one of the mail order magazines for like two for $2.00, so you cannot beat the price.  They were tiny little sticks that took off, leafed out and did fairly well for two years.  Last summer they stopped growing up and just flopped down and out and were a mess over some perennials I wanted to keep.  I took all but one out and moved it to a bed near the driveway, this year it seems happier and it now lighter and growing more up, but no blooms.  I’d say I chopped them all off last fall.  It has more room now, so if it wants to flop, I guess it can.  The blooms are really pretty and for that reason I will keep it going.
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Hydrangea Serrata Preziosa is probably one of my very favorites.  It is suppose to be wonderful fall colors, its stems are dark burgundy and the blooms and leaves will darken as well.  You would just die if you saw what I did to this plant last fall.  I bought it on clearance for like $4.00 and it was a little tiny dried out plant.  But it had a definite fork dividing it into two directions.  Yes, you guessed it… I chopped it in half!  And I’m here to tell you both plants are thriving, blooming…. tripled in  size and beautiful.  I would not recommend that for the expensive ones, but I guess I was brave that day.
Summer Lace
This last one is brand new on the market and I cannot find too much information on it.  It is the new forever and ever hydrangea  called Summer Lace.  I purchased mine with a couple blooms, but they are long faded…. but I think it is trying to bloom again.  By being  a repeat bloomer, so the frost should not get all the blooms, and it is a lacecap…. which I love.  The pic is from the web, I hope mine looks like that in a year or two!
Okay, that is 10 I’ve talked about…. now let me tell you a little secret…. I have cuttings from two oakleafed and two more unknown varieties rooting under my deck.  They are super easy to root…. just take a soft stemmed 6” or so piece, dip it in root compound and place it in a container with a gallon sided baggie over it, or if you have a damp shaded spot right in the ground.  I have had VERY good luck rooting hydrangeas.

Let me know the kinds you grow…. I’d love to hear from you.
Happy Gardening….Brooke

8 comments :

  1. Brooke I love all of your beautiful Hydrangeas! You have such a nice variety. Your Raspberry Parfait looks similar to one I got 2 years ago. It didn't bloom last year but is going to anytime now. It's called Buttons and Bows. My lacecap is brilliant blue because of the soil. Was going to change it then decided it got too many compliments so I bought a new kind (somehow lost ticket with name) and put it in a container. I almost lost it last winter so now I'm worried that maybe I should put it in the ground and will have to fight to keep it pink. Ohhhhhhhh the trials of gardening! LOL
    Thank you so much for featuring my posts on GardenWeb, I feel so honored.

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  2. You have such a great variety of hydrangeas. You obviously have a knack for them. Nice tip on rooting them. Beautiful blooms!!

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  3. I love your hydrangeas!!! I grow Pink Diamond and Endless Summer in my zone 3 garden in Edmonton. I admit to a bit of envy looking at your gorgeous flowers! Limelight grows well here but it is hard to find a hardy lacecap. Endless Summer just came out with Twist N Shout and I'd love to get it but it looks as if a move might be in order this year so maybe at the new place. Thank you for sharing!

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  4. I am in awe of all your fabulous hydrangeas! Don't you need a lot of shade for them? Your garden seems full of sun, like mine! Thank you so much for highlighting my butterfly post, I'm really honored.

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  5. Thanks so much girls! My house is set just enough that the front border has about 4 feet out of shade next to the house all afternoon. And the nook in front of the garage is almost all shade, I never thought that either with us being on this hill with virtually no trees. I have moved many a plant b/c they did not get enough sun. I had to move the hh this year b/c they only came up about 2 feet! Anyway, I am just about full and running out of room. I have spots for my new seedlings, then another tucked under the basement wing wall.... after that we'll have to wait till my shade trees get big!

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  6. I LOVE the raspberry parfait one!!! Hydrangea is one of my all time favorites...but it always gives me a run for my money!

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  7. Hi Brooke,

    I love hydrangeas and yours are particularly beautiful!

    I found your blog through the blog hop party!
    Carla

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  8. Hi Brooke,
    You have a wonderful selection of hydrangeas!

    I have 3 Forever and Ever (only one has bloomed) and I just bought a Limelight. I would love to get more of them.

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Thanks so much for leaving a comment. I enjoy hearing from my readers!