How to Plant, Grow, and Care for Hydrangea Shrubs

Deep Blue Hydrangea Bloom


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With immense flower heads, hydrangeas flaunt an old-fashioned charm that is hard to resist. Colors also beguile with clear blues, vibrant pinks, frosty whites, lavender, and rose—sometimes all blooming on the same plant!

The colors of some hydrangeas—especially mophead and lacecap—can change color based on the soil pH, which affects relative availability of aluminum ions. Acidic soils with a pH of less than 5.5 produce blue flowers; soils with a pH greater than 5.5 product pink flowers. White flowers are not affected by pH.

Unrivaled in the shrub world, these elegant ladies are easy to cultivate, tolerate almost any soil, and produce flowers in mid-summer through fall (when little else may be in bloom). Hydrangeas are excellent for a range of garden sites from group plantings to shrub borders to containers.


  • Most hydrangeas thrive in rich, porous, somewhat moist soils. Add compost to enrich poor soil.
  • They prefer full sun in the morning, with some afternoon shade; however, many will grow and bloom in partial shade. This is especially true for the bigleaf hydrangeas (see Recommended Varieties below).
  • Plant in spring or fall.
  • Dig a hole as deep as the root ball and 2 to 3 times as wide.
  • Set the plant in the hole and fill it half full with soil. Water. After water is drained, fill the rest of the hole with soil.
  • Water thoroughly.
  • Space multiple hydrangeas about 3 to 10 feet apart.


  • For the first year or two after planting and during any drought, be sure hydrangeas get plenty of water. Leaves will wilt if the soil is too dry.
  • If your soil is rich, you may not need to fertilize hydrangeas. If your soil is light or sandy, it’s best to feed the plants once a year in late winter or spring. Too much fertilizer encourages leafy growth at the expense of blooms. Learn more about soil amendments.
  • In the fall, cover plants to a depth of at least 18 inches with bark mulch, leaves, pine needles, or straw. If at all possible, cover the entire plant, tip included, by making cages out of snow fencing or chicken wire, and loosely filling the cages with leaves. (Do not use maple leaves, as they will break down too quickly.)

How to Prune a Hydrangea

Many of our readers’ questions are about pruning a hydrangea. And no wonder it’s confusing! It depends on the variety of hydrangea. 

Common Hydrangea Shrubs

  • The most common garden hydrangea shrub is the Bigleaf variety, H. macrophylla). One type of Bigleaf is the “Mophead” with the big snowball-size blooms. The other type of Bigleaf is the “Lacecap” with the pretty flowers almost hanging down from a flat center of tiny blooms. 
  • The Bigleaf variety, or H. macrophylla, as well as H. paniculata and H. quercifolia are pruned AFTER the flowers fade. 
  • Flower buds actually form in the late summer and flower afterwards the following season, so avoid pruning after August 1. 
  • Only cut away dead wood in the fall or very early spring.
  • To prune, cut one or two of the oldest stems down to the base to encourage branching and fullness. 
  • If the plant is old or neglected or damaged, prune all the stems down to the base. You’ll lose the flowers for the upcoming season, but also renovate the plant for future years.
  • It’s best not to deadhead (remove faded blooms) on the big mopheads; leave them over the winter and cut them back in early spring (to the first healthy pair of buds). It’s fine to deadhead the lacecaps; cut down to the second pair of leaves below the flower head.

Other Hydrangeas

  • Oakleaf, panicle, and smooth hydrangeas are treated differently. They blossom on the current season’s wood. They should be pruned in the later winter when the plant is dormant BEFORE bloom. This means that if the buds are killed during the winter, they will produce new buds in the spring which will produce blooms. 
  • In general, prune only dead branches, and do not prune to “shape” the bush. 

Read more about how to prune hydrangea varieties.


Click links for common pest pages:


Try drying hydrangea flowers to create a wreath or other decorations around the house:

  • Harvest the heads when the flowers have matured and developed a papery consistency.
  • Remove leaves from stems, and hang upside down in a warm, dry, dark, airy room.
  • When completely dry (usually a couple of weeks), store in a dry location out of direct sunlight.
  • To enhance flower color, spritz dry flowers with diluted Rit dye.

Recommended Varieties

Wit & Wisdom

Changing the Color of a Hydrangea

It is possible to change the flowers’ colors, but not instantly. Color correction takes weeks—even months. It is easier to change blue flowers to pink than pink to blue. Wait until the plant is at least 2 years old to give it time to recover from the shock of its original planting.

  • Start with the Hydrangea macrophylla variety. Have your soil pH tested.
  • To get blue flowers, you need to lower the pH, which you can do by adding sulfur or peat moss to the soil. To get pink to light red flowers, add ground limestone only around the plant; a pH above 7.5 will result in poor growth.
  • Note that hard water can affect the flower color, turning blue flowers more pinkish, so use rainwater to water your hydrangeas.
  • In the fall, hydrangea flowers will naturally fade, often to a combination of pink and green. This is simply the aging process which cannot be reversed. Next year, the flowers will return to their original color.

Reader Comments

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No blooms

My hydrangea never seem to bloom. We have healthy green leaves, but no flowers. We have one plant in the front of the house and one in the back. One gets full sun in the morning, one in the afternoon. Same problem with both plants :-(

hydrangeas have healthy foliage but no blooms

Do you know if you have lace cap or mophead hydrageas? The lace cap produce “flowers” that consist of teeny, tiny flowers surrounded (more or less) by substantially larger, usually four-petal flowers. Mopheads have the large balls of same-size flowers.  If that’s not what you’re dealing with, we can only suggest this: It could be as simple as too much shade or too much sun. It could be too much fertilizer, esp high nitrogen fertilizer, which will result in beautiful foliage but few if any flowers. It could be too much moisture—or too little moisture. And, how is the pH of the soil?? Have they got enough compost? Also, the blooming of hydrangeas is affected by how they have been pruned, which depends on the type of hydrangea. Some bloom on second-year wood, others on the current year’s growth.


Lots of blooms, But they are all Bright Green. Is that the nature of the beast? I have never seen one like this I live in British Columbia. It is planted with a group of Hostas.Any suggestions to turn this to Blue?


Sounds like you have the variety called "Limelight". That bright lime green is their color. Doesn't change.

new white-flowered blossoms are turning brown

Plants have been well-watered and get morning only direct sunlight. New buds bloomed, but plants now appear to be dying. Blossoms are turning brown, but leaves still look fine. Do Hydrangea bloom more than once a season?

failing to thrive

There are so very many brands of hydrangea available today, it is hard to keep up. Do they bloom more than once…? Well, they bloom and hold the flowers, typically. But there may be “new” plants that do more. You say it get only morning sun. Is that enough? Do you have a care tag? Some need more sun. Is the water standing under the plant or is it draining off? It is best to water deeply every 5 to 7 days. Mulch will help the soil to retain moisture during that period. Bud failure can also be caused by frost or the soil may lack basic trace elements. Do a soil test and amend accordingly. Finally, the problem could also be insects or disease.

hydrangea bush.

The leaves on some of my hydrangea bush are drying & curling. What would cause this to happen?


I bought 6 hydrangea s.have potted them in saner compost and fed them the same 5 are doing well and coming into bloom , but one has a lot of foliage but non flower buds , can you tell me why X for

Everblooming Hydrangea

We have everblooming hydrangeas. They had a lot of buds at the tips this year but we used moss out on our roof and the drippings from the roof fell on to the hydrangea. Buds are now brown and some of the leafs on the plants went limp do you think they will bounce back? Any suggestions what I can give them?

hydrangea blossom but never open up hardly at all to bloom.

hydrangeas blossom but never open up hardly at all to bloom....what am I doing wrong? Plants look healthy but blossoms don't open, the plants are probably 6 years old, moved them last spring to get more sun and still no blooms.

blooms do not open...

Do you know if you have lace cap or mophead hydrageas? The lace cap produce “flowers” that consist of teeny, tiny flowers surrounded (more or less) by substantially larger, usually four-petal flowers. Mopheads have the large balls of same-size flowers.  If that’s not what you’re dealing with, we can only suggest this: It could be as simple as too much shade or too much sun. It could be too much fertilizer, esp high nitrogen fertilizer, which will result in beautiful foliage but few if any flowers. It could be too much moisture—or too little moisture. And, how is the pH of the soil?? Have they got enough compost? There may not be a good, solid explanation, but moving them to a different “environment” will at least give you a point of comparison. Also, the blooming of hydrangeas is affected by how they have been pruned, which depends on the type of hydrangea. Some bloom on second-year wood, others on the current year’s growth. Not knowing the type you have or how it has been pruned, I can’t say for sure why it isn’t blooming.




Plant disease

Just bought two plants on markdown. Both have tiny black spots on stems. I sprayed with dish soap and vinegar. What can I do to save them?

black spots

This has come up; here is our suggestion from below: There are a few different fungal diseases that can cause spotting on hydrangea leaves, including black spot, powdery mildew, and cercospora. They will not kill the shrub, but it is good to try to control spread. Treating any of them includes removing diseased leaves from the plant and the soil. Once the soil surface is clean, put down (and maintain) a very thick layer of compost mulch to suppress disease spores, which are airborne. Then, follow instructions on how and when to apply neem oil.


My new leaves are browning on the ends. Some of the older leaves too. What am I doing wrong? Help?

brown spots on hydrangea leaves

Usually, this is a moisture issue. Sometimes, the plant can be root-bound, too. Gently dig the plants early in the morning to check for both conditions. If needed, lightly loosen the roots with your hand. You can also soak the root ball in water until it’s moistened through. Make sure you maintain uniform moisture for your hydrangeas.
Location can also be an issue. If they’re getting sun burnt, they’d do better with light shade.


A landscaper planted 12 Hydrangeas for me last June 2016.....beautiful most of last summer..... and now they are not showing much life {only few green leaves at base of plant}...just all bare sticks.....It looks as if they were not planted all the way into the ground... .could that be the problem? By now they should be full of green leaves and buds and getting ready to bloom.....Suggestions??

Stick-y hydrangeas

How unfortunate! One question is whether your hydrangea is alive. Do the “scratch test.” If you scratch a stick with your fingernail and it’s green underneath, it’s still alive; if it’s brown, it’s dead.  We also suggestion that you direct your question to the landscaper. Ask him what variety these plants are and what you should expect. Did he make a one-year guarantee of the plants? Some nurseries have a replacement policy of one year, if the plant/s appear to have failed for some reason. 

hydrangias that are too large for the space

I planted 4 hydrangia "bushes" about 7 years ago, not realizing that the size would grow to be 5-6 ft tall ( they are the large drooping white kind of flowers). I would like to move them as they are too large for the space. How deep are the roots usually and how difficult would that process be?

transplanting hydrangia

Yes you can move your hydrangea though it’s not easy. It’s best to transplant large specimens in the fall on a cool, cloudy day once the plant has dropped its leaves and has gone dormant. To reduce shock, root-prune the plant before transplanting. Using a spading shovel, dig a shovel-deep ring just outside of the leaf line of the plant at a 45-degree angle. Make only a single cut, disturbing the roots as little as possible. Keep the plant watered thoroughly the next few days so the roots have time to recover.

Before you transplant, prepare the new planting hole, mixing in a good planting soil mix. Ensure it’s big enough and deep enough so that the rootball is 1 inch higher than the depth of the hole. You’ll need to dig a very deep trench around the rootball, and cut deep enough under it that you only sever the small feeder roots, not the large old ones. This could require using a shovel and digging iron and a lot of hard work.

Never lift or move the plant by the branches; always touch and move the plant by the root ball. Some gardeners prefer to secure the plant’s branches gently with burlap and twine to reduce the chance of damaging the plant before removing it from the ground.

To re-plant the root ball, you’ll need to tilt on its side and place it on a tarp or in a wheelbarrow and transport it to its new location quickly. Place the plant in its new home. Backfill the hole with a mixture of fresh planting mix and existing soil leaving no gaps, water thoroughly and mulch. Mulch will keep the plant’s roots cool, help prevent weeds and keep the soil moist. Keep the mulch at least 2 inch away from the trunk of the plant.

Newly transplanted plants need some tender care and especially need to be watered regularly until winter so the roots don’t try out but do not overwater as root rot could occur. Fertilize your hydrangea the following summer when you see the plant growing again. 

my hydrangea

I have 2 bushes next to my house with azaleas in front of them. We planted them when we first moved here 10 years ago, they have never bloomed! I am thinking to moving them where they would get more sun and there are no other plants. Any suggestions?

no blooms for years

If a plant is not performing—growing/producing—as expected, something’s wrong. It could be as simple as too much shade or too much sun. It could be too much fertilizer, esp high nitrogen fertilizer, which will result in beautiful foliage but few if any flowers. It could be too much moisture—or too little moisture.

Do you know what kind of hydrangea it is? That would be a start. In the meantime, are you pruning it? The buds for the next year’s flowers are formed this year. Pruning, even severe cold can kill flower buds (but seldom affect leaf buds).

And, how is the pH of the soil?? Have they got enough compost? There may not be a good, solid explanation, but moving them to a different “environment” will at least give you a point of comparison.

petals fading and turning a very light brown

I recently planted 4 pink Mophead hydrangeas. I am in 8a zone and they get sun from 1000 to 1500. I followed the directions above on planting, spacing, and fertilizing them and I water them every day. Two years ago we put lime where the hydrangeas are planted. Now, they have recently started fading to a very light brown and three out of the four really have changed. The leaves and petals look healthy, its just the color has changed. I read about how a little red spider can suck the nutrients out of the petal, so I sprayed them with insecticide hoping that would help but nothing has helped. Do you have any suggestions?

droopy Mopheads

Mopheads—so far as our research suggests—are also known as Big Leaf Hydrangeas. We looked into a few sources and these suggest that yours may be getting too much sun. The little red spiders may also be present; it might be wise for your to review/copare the pics of diseased leaves on the US National Arboretum page below or consult a local nursery (taking a couple of leaves with you).

Here’s the Arboretum page: http://www.usna.usda.gov/Gardens/faqs/hydrangeafaq2.html

Here’s a cooperative extension page: http://extension.uga.edu/publications/detail.cfm?number=C973

We hope this helps—



I have a lot of deer in my yard. Will they feast on hydrangeas?

deer and hydrangea

Deer might eat your hydrangea, Beverly, if they are hungry enough and there are few options. TO be on the safe side, you could try this: We recently learned of a gardener who used Milorganite fertilzer around plants that she did not want animals to bother. (We do not know if Milorganite will alter the pink/blue of your flower.)



I am interested in knowing if, because they are refereed to as a "bush"...will one plant spread like bushes do?


My hydrangea is usually beautiful but fot the last 12months we have a building site next to our fence where they are suddenly the leaves have gone brown mostly at the tips is it due to the cement thats in the air and what can I do it only seems to be on the top of the bush should I snip them off

cement in the air?

It wouldn’t seem like cement in the air would be a problem; maybe cement in the soil … if in large quantities. But remember that hydrangeas are susceptible to disease. This page from the Alabama Cooperative Extension service (more on your local in a moment) shows the effects of several problems with hydrangeas and offers some advice to remedy the situation: http://www.aces.edu/pubs/docs/A/ANR-1212/ANR-1212.pdf

If you would like advice from your local cooperative extension service, find your state here and follow through with contact: http://www.almanac.com/content/cooperative-extension-services

If it’s convenient for you, you might also bring a leaf to a local nursery, describe the situation, and see if they have an opinion.

We hope this helps!

Birthday gift dying?

My husband bought me a beautiful pot with a Hydrangea. It is sitting in our kitchen on the counter, out of any direct sunlight. The card said to water it often, so we have done that, but my blooms have all turned brown and are falling off. Is it too late to plant it outside? Will it recover, and bloom again?

Heated Discussion

Hi, Vickie: Assuming that your plant does not have some sort of disease or pest (inspect carefully; if so, do online research) and you have not just totally drowned your hydrangea (it should be moist, not swamped), it would seem that heat might be a possible culprit as the cause of your brownout. Sometimes folks equate heat with sun, but the two aren’t the same. Perhaps your kitchen has just been too warm for it. In any event, sure, go ahead and plant it outside as long as you are not in the far north (find your last frost date here: http://www.almanac.com/gardening/frostdates). Snip off the brown blooms and go for it. Be sure to read all the advice above. Good luck and thanks for asking!

Planting hydrangea in a big pot

What is the correct way to do this?

growing hydrangeas in containers

The planting and care information at the top of this page should be helpful. Hydrangeas need full sun in the morning and some shade in the afternoon. They grow best in rich moist soil. You can plant your hydrangea in a big pot with fresh potting mix. Place the pot in a sunny spot outdoors and don’t let the soil dry out.


is it ok to put white marble rock around the hydrangea. i put film down and then the rock.will hydrangeas be ok in this setting.thanks for your advice

Hi, we live on Zakynthos in

Hi, we live on Zakynthos in Greece the temperature in the summer regularly exceeds 40 degrees C (104 F) and in the winter we do get some mild ground frosts. We often go 5 or even 6 months with no rain in the summer and in the winter we have very heavy rainfall. The average annual temperature is 18.5 °C. (65.3 F) rainfall averages 937 mm 170 mm in December alone, often leading to our garden flooding. My questions are: Will Hydrangeas tolerate this much sunshine or will they need shade? Will they survive flooding for 1 or 2 days, 4 or 5 times each winter? Will they survive and flower long term if grown in a pot?
Thank you.

How do I rehab struggling Hydrangeas in place for years?

Hi, I bought a house last fall. There are two small Hydrangeas on the North side of the house. Both seem to have been in place for at least a couple of years, as the grass is completely filled in around the base, with no signs of disturbed earth. They are both small, and one seems to be really struggling. They are a beautiful blue color, so I would like to save them and get them healthy. Should I peel off the sod around them, fertilize, and mulch? Or should I dig them up and move them to a sunnier spot? If I dig, how far out should I dig from the stems so I don't cut roots?

Thank you!

PS... They both have live

PS... They both have live buds, but the smaller one only has buds around the base, and not the branch tips like the other. Also, I'm worried about compacted soil as they are planted in the lawn up against the foundation, and not in any type of a bed. How can I amend their environment, or should I dig up and start over? There are spruce trees 10 feet away, so I think they are acidic enough.

what to do about hydrangeas

There is an old rule of thumb that advises when you move into a new home you should not do attempt to alter the plantings/property until you have been there for a year—a full cycle of seasons. The idea is that you will see what comes up, blooms, etc. and know better what’s there and how it’s doing. In today’s world, a year might seem like a lifetime but we tend to favor this idea. With spring upon us, you can watch the progress of the plants and see how they do in their show-off season. (A lot of hydrangeas look weak in the off season.) Another reason we like it is that there are so many types of hydrangeas … unless you know what this is, you do not know what you’re dealing with. They might like a north side. There is the idea that you inquire of the buyer what type/variety they are, and/or how they do in that spot … but again we advise giving the plant time to reveal itself to you.

Is it dead or alive? Please help

I purchased a flowering beautiful hydrangea Pink diamond is Sept 2016, (I live in NJ) I planted it and it was fine for about a month and a half. Then the deer came and ate almost all the leaves off of it, so we put netting around it. Now, April of 2017 it appears to be just dead branches. Will it still start to get buds and new growth or is it dead, How can I tell? Please advise me of your opinion. Thank you so much

The best way to tell if the

The best way to tell if the plant is dead is to simply scrape a little of the bark with your fingernail. If it's green underneath, it's alive. If it's brown, it's dead.

I found these articles very

I found these articles very informative. It helped me very much..thanks

Slips from an older hydrangea

My daddy started a couple slips from a hydrangea my sons got for me for Mothers Day over 30 years ago. This past summer the blooms were the most beautiful they have ever been. He lives at the property where the original plant is so I wanted to have plants from that original hydrangea that was sentimental to me. The two potted plants he grew for me were pretty healthy and were about 10" in height when he brought them to me. I live in zone 6 and even though it was mid September the weather was still hot so I kept the plants watered and in the partial sun. However it wasn't long the leaves started turning brown and falling off. After a few weeks I researched and did find that was a result of too little water to which I rectified. I hadn't chose a spot to plant them plus I felt they were to young to put them in the ground to survive a winter so decided to bring them in for the winter and keep them in my pantry where I would keep my florescent light on just so many hours through the day and my furnace unit is in that small room so it stays a comfortable temp. Now my issue is the poor little plants has gradually lost every leaf and they are down to a little stem. One plant has only a healthy bud of leaves that look like they are ready to break open anytime. The other has two of the same thing only they are at the soil line and have been there all along and have done nothing. Other than a half inch of a green and brown stem and the two soil line buds that pot is the only thing it has. Should I give them just a tiny feeding to see if it would boost them and help them along. My daddy used the correct potting soil for the hydrangeas. I don't want to lose the plants since they came from a hydrangea my sons got me years ago and mean a lot to me. I know my daddy would start more for me but he is elderly and in bad health. What do you recommend to save these plants? Help.

Hydrangea Indoors

Your hydrangeas sound like they are stressed. They may have suffered transplant shock when they were potted up. And now their growing conditions have changed again. Sometimes the best thing to do is nothing. Let them adapt to the conditions, watering only as needed and keeping the light consistent. Don’t worry about fertilizing until spring.

how to get hydrangeas seeds

how to get hydrangeas seeds from a hydrangea

Collecting hydrangea seeds is

Collecting hydrangea seeds is a challenge, and growing from seed is also quite difficult. Cuttings are the preferred method of propagation. Take a cutting from new growth and dust the stem with root hormone. Remove most of the leaves and cut those that remain in half. Put the cutting in potting soil and place a plastic bag like a tent over the plant (to keep moisture in). Once the cutting starts to root, remove the bag.


Planting from seed

A friend's mother in law gave me a (too big) bag of dried clusters of seed pods, each containing a large number of seeds from various hydrangeas that thrive in the cold of New England. I weeded out thorn brush and other wild plants from a 5 by 2.5 ft patch on the boundary between cleared and wild parts of my property, dug out all the roots from the very organic acidic soil, opened six of the clusters of pods and uniformly spread that vast number of seeds (far too many for that area) pressed them in slightly, then threw 1/16 in of inorganic soil on top to discourage whatever might find and eat the seeds.
I never had a hydrangea before, on the slim chance that I did any of that right and a tenth of them sprout next spring, how do I tell them apart from weeds? I didn't find any pictures of what they look like at that stage. If anything close to a tenth sprout I need to transplant them further apart very early. How do I guess below ground size from above ground size in the first few months, to know when I can't wait longer to transplant without excessive intertwining of roots?

Help! Flooded Hydrangeas

Hurricane Matthew caused the river I live on to spill over the bank into my yard and covered my first row of hydrangeas for about 2-3 hours. The river water is brackish/salty. They really took a beating and look awful now. Will they come back next Spring? Should I prune them back??

Flooded Hydrangeas

They should bounce back next spring, yes. Plants often take months, sometimes even years, to recover from a major shock like that. Don’t prune them, that would be an added stressor at this point. In the spring, just remove any dead wood. Next fall, if they are strong and healthy again, you can do a regular annual pruning. Good luck!

Increadable hydrangeas

This year my hydrangeas acted crazy... There are about 10years old . Every year in November my husband cuts them back to 18 inches and they come back beautiful. Until this year... In there growing stage we had some really harsh rain and the bent down and many broke off. One of the bushes only got small flowers that never got to the usual large size. One bush under a large tree now barely grows and sparsely flower. Then it looks like something ate there leaves.. They turned green early in July which is very weird... I live in Chicago and this is my pride and joy. Next month after Halloween is when we cut them .. I tried to add photos but won't let me


My hydrangea was accidentally weeded by a gardener. How can I salvage it? It's just about 3 inches from grown now. When it was cut, it was mid-September but temp was low 90 degrees F.

Save Hydrangea

At this point, it is a matter of letting it grow back. If you live in a cold climate, mulch it for the winter. Next spring, start fertilizing. Give it a growing season to bounce back and send up new growth. The following year, get onto an annual pruning schedule. Good luck!

Is it possible to cut the leaves off of the plants to form other

The plants are expensive. I have heard by cutting some leaves off I can get more plants. How do I do this? And first of all is this true and when do I do this. What is the procedure?


my hydrangea will not bloom.


These are bushes that I asked about.The ones with the large cone shape


I bought 2 hydrangea plants 2 weeks ago from the nursery. They are very well established,about 3-4 ft tall each. We brought them home and planted them both,exactly how you described above. We watered well.The one was doing great ,but the other ,the leaves swrivelled right away.We still watered, Within a week,the second one has done the same thing. Now both are brown leaves,brown stems.They look dead. They cost me a fortune,and I love these plants. What should I do? Are they dead? and why? They are facing east,get lots of sun in the first half of the day. Lots of water, Should I cut them down and see if they start back? or dig them out and take back to the nursery?
They say I have a 1 yr guarantee. Should I let them go through the winter?

Pruning young Hydrangea PG

Hi, I have a young 2 1/2 year old Hydrangea Paniculata Grandiflora grown from cutting, it is about 2' tall and wide. The growth is quite bushy but individual branches are thin and spindly.
Would you recommend to do some pruning of this plant next Spring?

Pruning Hydrangea Paniculata

Hi Marina,

This species of hydrangea is known to have weak stems and branches. Because it blooms on the current year’s wood, it would behoove you to do some light pruning in the early spring–that will help to encourage bloom. Think about structure as you prune–you want to create a solid framework to support new growth and flowers.

is it still alive?

I got a hydrangea (white) that I was to plan this summer and forgot about planting it. It has been on my deck in a container and I did water it occasionally. I noticed that it has dried up, but I knicked the actual stem part and its still green under it, still alive I hope? Is this trash bound or should I plant it today? I am in Minnesota, Mpls area.

Dead looking plant with some green

Keep it a friend of mine threw away potted dead hydrangea plants or so we thought and my Mom said plant them they will come back. I thought she was crazy. I planted them in the fall out side and in the spring they were beautiful.

Leggy Hydrangea

Bought a common hydrangea as a very small root. Grown about 2/3 foot tall. Single stem and no bloom. Should I cut it back and if so by how much?

white hydrangea

I find your website very interesting and helpful.
I bought a white hydrangea, it was growing well and started to bloom then the whole plant dried up and die. I don't what why. I was watering it regularly and feeding it too. What do you suggest.

Hydrangea Sudden Death

Hi Medha,

I suspect your hydrangea was exposed to some kind of soil-borne disease, such as Phytophthora root rot. It is important to test your soil before replanting, as many plants succumb to that disease. If it is in the soil, the soil should be replaced before you plant anything.

hydrangea vs maple leaf

I read on your Web site that you don't recommend Maple leaf for mulch or Winter protection. Could you tell me the reason why not because I do this every year. I put around 3 inches of shredded Maple leaves around my hydrangea each year. Thanks in advance for your reply.

Maple Leaves as Mulch

Hi Michel - I just wondered if you ever received an answer to your question. I have the same one. I have a red maple that, of course, looses it's leaves right along with my oaks, so I would like to know the answer too. I am getting ready, next weekend, to plant 4 hydrangeas. I hope you get this message before then, if not, I'll be checking elsewhere for the answer.
Thanks, Diane

Maple leaves

The reason we say to avoid maple leaves is because they tend to be very large, flat, and mat together (especially the Norway and Sugar maple leaves). This doesn’t allow enough air circulation.  It’s best to use oak or other leaves.  If you do have a lot of maple leaves, just be sure to mix with a lot of other types of leaves and pine needles.


One of my hydrangeas, planted 2 years ago is green and healthy, but doesn't bloom, even though I've fertilized. It gets some morning sun. Does it need more sun? It's the big, blue bloom type.
M. Richardson


I planted a hydrangea 4 years ago. The first year yielded 7-8 bloom.s The next year only 2 blooms. The last 2 summers there have been no blooms but the bush has very healthy, vibrant green foliage and has grown much larger. I would appreciate any suggestions on getting this bush to bloom

Hydrangea Blooms

The blooming of hydrangeas is affected by how they have been pruned, which depends on the type of hydrangea. Some bloom on second-year wood, others on the current year’s growth. Not knowing the type you have or how it has been pruned, I can’t say for sure why it isn’t blooming. Try fertilizing and determine its pruning requirements–the answer could lie there.

Need help with water-logged hydrangea

I transplanted my hydrangea into a larger pot and gave it plenty of water, when it started to rain and hasn't stopped for a couple of weeks.. I noticed the plant wasn't looking well and noticed about 3'' of water in the pot because of poor drainage. I drilled more holes to allow more water to escape but the dirt around the plant is soaking wet, and it looks the leaves and flowers are getting brown. it looks like its on it's last legs, is there anything I can do to save it? It was absolutely gorgeous!!

?transplant shock?

My hydrangea's leaves are beautiful but all the blooms have turned from a lovely pink to light green then brown. I transplanted it from it's original container to a larger one, then into the ground. I have watered well and gently fertilized. It is in a moderately sunny location with good soil. I hope this is just transplant shock, but I'm concerned that I've done it real harm. Help please!

Hydrangea re-potting

I have several Hydrangeas' that need re-potting. Should I do it now before the winter, or wait until the spring? The plants are on a roof garden in the Torquay area.
A reply would be appreciated. Thank you.

Repotting Hydrangeas

Hi Ann,

Either time would be fine. If you do it now, be sure to provide ample water.

vanilla strawberry hydranga

I have purchased some seeds and am not sure when I can start planting them? Should I start them in my house?

New probagation of hydrangea plant

I have just read on FB how to probagate the hydrangea plant, so have done so. I am wanting to know (a) do I put them in my garage over the winter or do I put them in the ground after the roots have started and protect the plant? I live in southern Kansas and the ground freezes.

Hydrangea bush

Hydrangea bush
I have 5of them I transplanted last fall and they grew well and only had one flower and this summer they have no flowers but the plant is beautiful! What am I doing wrong

hydrangea blooms

I have mopheads that growing on both old and new wood is that possible. I had beautiful flowers for the first couple of years but now only the city line hydrangeas are blooming. I have fertilized the plants, covered them over winter, I did not prune them in fear of cutting the buds. They are in full sun and some in part sun. I have no idea why they won't bloom. I have a lot of plants and they were expensive. The plants are about 8 years old.


I have several large hydrangea plants close together, they are quite tall and some are falling over...do I stake them? How do I prevent this?

Hydrangeas Need Pruning

It sounds like your shrubs could stand to be pruned (a little on the hard side) after the blooming season. A combination thinning and heading cuts will keep them from getting tall and floppy. In the meantime, you could use twine to loosely tie them up.


Can I plant it in the garden it's in a pot but I'm afraid if it stays in the pot it may become pot bound thanks

Nicco Blue

My hydrangeas are 15 yrs old
For the last two years they bloom less
This year hardy plant almost no flowers
Please advise

White mop head hydrangeas

My white mop head hydrangeas start out white in the spring but turn green by the end of June. How do I keep the heads white?


My son bought me a hydrangea for Mother's Day about three years ago.I planted it outside and it didnt do anything till last year and it came back but not very tall (4 to 5 inches).This year it it's doing better (1'1/2 tall) but not much of anything else.Will it ever bloom? Thank you for your time.

Silverish Leaf Spots

I have a blue hydrangea that I put in about 6 weeks ago. Generally, it appears to be doing pretty good and there's some new leaf growth and what I'm hoping is going to be another bloom. However, some of the older leaves have developed silverish areas (kind of looks like sun burn). They get morning sun and I've really made an effort with this plant as I've not had any luck with hydrangeas before. I live in Oregon, about 5000 feet altitude (high desert). I haven't been able to find anything so I'm hoping you can help. Thanks!!

Silver Leaves on Hydrangea

Hi Linda,

Hydrangeas thrive in woodland gardens, so that might be why you have had a hard time with them. But with regular slow-release granular fertilizer applications, plenty of water, and proper pruning, they should do just fine (as long as they are not sitting in baking hot sun all day). As for the silver leaves, I suspect it is powdery mildew, which is very common in the Pacific Northwest. It will not kill the plant. Remove the affected foliage and keep the soil free of any fallen leaves. Air circulation is important, so anything you can do to increase it is advised. Your plant sounds too young to do any real pruning on, but as it grows, keep on top of the pruning so branches don’t get crowded. Powdery mildew likes moist, temperate conditions.


Somewhat of a strange subject for the middle of the summer. Anyway, the winters here can be very harsh and I'm planning ahead. The plant is up against a fence (faces east) so it's pretty well protected from the wind. My question is what should I do to help it make it through the winter?? Should I prune it in the Fall?? Also, thanks very much for the advice on my leaf problem. It's now turned from silverish to tan and crunchy. I've been picking off the affected leaves and it looks OK. I REALLY want this plant to make it. Thanks, again!!


I have a hydrangea plant that has red/black spots all over it. Is it sick and how do I fix it? I was going to send a pic but I can't on here.

If I want to move my

If I want to move my hydrangeas when is the best time in the year? Mine I believe are not getting enough sunlight.

When to move hydrangea

Yes, you should move your hydrangea if it is not getting enough sunlight which is needed for flower production.  Move the hydrangea in the fall once it’s fully dormant (after a couple hard frosts if possible). You can really move it any time before early spring.

Diseased hydrangea

My beautiful hydrangea developed large dark spots on leaves and blooms. I am not sure what went wrong.

Black Spots on Hydrangea

Hi Susan,

There are a few different fungal diseases that can cause spotting on hydrangea leaves, including black spot, powdery mildew, and cercospora. They will not kill the shrub, but it is good to try to control spread. Treating any of them includes removing diseased leaves from the plant and the soil. Once the soil surface is clean, put down (and maintain) a very thick layer of compost mulch to suppress disease spores, which are airborne. Then, follow instructions on how and when to apply neem oil.

white hydrangeas

My hydrangea plants are 10 -12 years old and do very well every year. This year the flowers have a bit of a bluish shade and I would like to keep them white. Is there anything I can do?

drawf Hydrangea

planted dead stick 2 years ago, now have one 10" tall with 4" pink bloom.. we love it, but can't find instructions on how to splice for a new plant.. we would love to have more, but none of the nursery's here carry any that small.. Does anyone know what we have to do to get new plants??? help..


I've had one for three years and it's only 3 inches tall. HELP.

Stunted Hydrangea

I suspect you have a “gift” hydrangea–one that was purchased in a grocery store (or someplace other than a nursery) and came in a foil-wrapped pot. If so, know that they are greenhouse-grown and fed a diet meant for them to be big and showy for purchase–often to the detriment of the plants’ long-term health. It is rare that they thrive when transplanted into the landscape. Consider replacing it with a nursery-grown hydrangea that is already a few years old.

Florist hydrangea

I have a florist hydrangea that was given to me by a garden center right after Mother's Day about 12 years ago. I planted it and after moving it 3 times,it finally found it's home in a natural area that only gets about 3 hours of morning sun. It has lived in this spot for 9 years now and has lovely blue blooms every year.It's a rather compact bush growing only about 3 to 3 1/2 feet. This is a tough little bush!

Struggling hydrangeas

We bought Endless Summer hydrangeas last year and planted them mid summer. We live in central Indiana. Two are planted on the south side of our house and so they get full sun. The other two are on the west side for the house, so they get full sun but a little less than the others. Only one on the west side of the house is doing ok, meaning it normally looks alright and there are about 3 or 4 blooms produced this year. The other on the west side is tiny, just one little leaf popped up and isn't doing anything. The two on the south side of the house have brown spots, have not bloomed, are really small and struggling. What can I do to improve these plants? I'm planning on adding mulch soon to retain moisture. I have started to water them a few times a week. Any assistance would be greatly accepted and appreciated. Thank you!

Hydrangeas in sun

Hydrangeas much prefer shady conditions. If there is any way you can move them to a darker location come fall, that would likely make a big difference in their overall health and blooming potential.


Earlier in thread, you said they like morning sun, partial shade in afternoon. I have that perfect place I want to plant them. Later you said they prefer shade. Well?

how can you change color to

how can you change color to purple

how to change hydrangeas to blue

Acidic soils cause hydrangeas to bloom blue (soil pH below 5.5). You can apply aluminum sulfate or sulfur to lower soil pH (broadcast half a cup of wettable sulfur per 10 square feet and water in). To gradually change flower color from pink to blue, broadcast half a cup of wettable sulfur per 10 square feet and water it in.

It’s even better if you can drench the soil. For example, dissolve one tablespoon of aluminum sulfate in one gallon of water, and then drench the soil around the plant in the spring. (Avoid the leaves, and get at soil level).

Hydrangea Leaves Turning Orange

We put in four very nice dwarf Hydrangea bushes in 2011 and they have done very well until this when three had mostly orange leaves. We've had a normal growing season in western North Carolina and all our other plants have done well. What happen and how do I correct this problem?

Orange Hydrangeas?

We planted four dwarf Hydrangea bushes in 2011 and they have done very well until this year when three of them now have mostly orange leaves. We've a good growing season in western North Carolina and all our other plants are very healthy. What has happed to these plants and what can I do about it.


I pruned my hydrangeas improperly last year and while the plant thrived and grew, I had no blossoms. This year I allowed the dead wood to remain all winter and in early spring I had new green leaves in the old wood stems. Then, suddenly the new green shoots died and dried up. I pruned the wood back to the base at that time, the plant is now thriving well but I have no blossoms again. I wonder why the new green died so suddenly. Help!

No Blooms

It is hard to say why the new stems died off, perhaps they were bitten by a cold snap while they were still tender. However, it is likely you don’t have blooms because you cut the old wood back to the base–those were the branches that would have produced blooms. You want to keep year-old wood for a few seasons before removing it. The new growth, as it ages, will take its place. That is how you keep hydrangeas blooming–they should always have a mix of older branches and first-year growth.

sick hydrangea

Please could you advise on what might be wrong with two hydrangeas which are currently in a pot (each). They are wilting and the leaves dying. I would be most grateful for any assistance.

Sick Hydrangea

It is hard to say for sure, but you might be over watering (wilting and drooping foliage is often a symptom). Providing good drainage is key to growing hydrangea in pots.


My hydrangea is new this year. There are buds-blossoms ready to open, but only a few on each head have opened. What do I do?

Closed Hydrangea Buds

Fertilizer might be the ticket. Try getting it on a bi-weekly schedule to see if you can encourage those buds to open.


How do I prune my shrub of hydrangea // Bottom large leaves now get brown // Shrub grow taller each day // Blooming ended // Please reply //

How to Prune Hydrangeas

Take a look at our advice for pruning hydrangeas. The method for pruning depends on what kind of shrub you have.


I have 3 hydrangea plants, I thought the first one survived our winter snow. I cut the dead part of it and cut it down and saw the branches were still alive (green). I have not yet seen any new growth or new leaves. This plant was bought last summer.
Early this summer, my new plants (2) apparently dried up (I had done away for several days), so I cut off the dead parts of these plants. Will any of these revive and show some life again? Discouraged.

Pruning Hydrangea

Take a look at our advice for pruning hydrangeas. The method for pruning depends on what kind of shrub you have. It may be that by cutting off year-old wood you have removed the branches that would have bloomed. This is the most common reason a hydrangea fails to flower Water them well and regularly since you say they are dry, but don’t do anymore pruning. Let them grow for the next two seasons to get established.


I planted my hydrangea and the new growth leaves are turning silver. Someone said if it's hothouse grown it will do that and it dies because it's meant to be inside.
Should I unplant and repot for indoors only?

Hot House Hydrangea

Hydrangeas that were grown in a greenhouse to be sold in grocery stores as gifts have been bred to produce big blooms quickly, functioning as one-time showy ornamentals. They are rarely hardy enough to make it outdoors.

old dried out hydrangeas plants

can I get some of my dried out hydrangeas plants healthy again if I cut them down to the base? or are they a loss cause?

Dried out hydrangea

If you still see green foliage, it is not a lost cause. Prune off stems and foliage that are clearly dead or dying. Set up a hose at the shrub’s drip line and turn it on to a low trickle. Let it run for a few hours so the plant gets a nice deep drink. Move the hose a few times so you are targeting the whole root zone. Be sure, too, your plant isn’t sited in direct sun. Hydrangeas prefer partial shade.


I have a macrophylla hydrangea it has been in the garden three years now and only bloomed the first year and the flowers were very small the last two years nothing, I gave it bone meal last year as told by the garden centre it would help to bloom this year but to no avail any information would be gratefully received
Many thanks Linda

Hydrangea Blooms

The most common reason people don’t get blooms has to do with improper pruning. There are two types of hydrangeas: those that bloom on new wood and those that bloom on old wood, and knowing what you have dictates how to prune it. Many people inadvertently cut off the branches that would have produced flowers. (Macrophylla hydrangea blooms on old wood.)

Transplanting Hydrangea

1. When is the best time to transplant them?
2. Any special conditioning?
3. Do they produce seeds so they can be reproduce?

Hydrangeas won't bloom!!

Please tell me what I need to do to make my 3 year old plant bloom!

My hydrangeas quit blooming

after a few yrs my plants quit blooming I get maybe one or two blooms each year. very frustrating.


how to make it bloom

Trimming to a lower height

I live in North Georgia. I have a very large Hydrangea macrophylla blocking my view of a golf green. I would like to leave the plant in place but trim/prune it to half it's current height so that it allows viewing of the golf green year to year. What can I do and what should be the timing?

Thank You!

I live in northern lower

I live in northern lower Michigan and have planted a incrediball smooth hydrangea. It's planted on the north side of the house and gets a little am and pm sun. It's very green and healthy but every day one stalk seems to break off at the base. Please help

Weak Hydrangea Stems

Weak stem growth from the base could be the result of improper pruning, which can encourage leafy unproductive growth that is subject to breakage.

Im new to this and need a

Im new to this and need a little help. My plant/shrub started blooming early May. Then on top of that flower a stem grew out of it and eventually the flowers died. I now have no flowers on my shrub. Is this normal?

Hydrangea macrophylla

The pink blooms ion my plant are turning a rusty color and the leaves are getting big Brown spots. What am I doing wrong?

Rust on Hydrangeas

This would seem to be a fungal infection called plant rust, as mentioned below. Unfortunately, not much can be done to save infected parts, so the idea is to prevent it from spreading. For starters, don’t water from the top, as this disturbs the spores and trickles them down to new prey. Carefully remove and dispose of (as in burn or throw away in a bag; don’t put in your compost) all infected leaves. Also remove the very top layer of soil (you are trying to get rid of as many spores as possible). Continually monitor/do this. In the meantime, you can be making some compost tea by putting a shovelful into about 5 gallons of water and letting it sit for a week. Then strain and spray on your plants. Another option is a 10:1 water/hydrogen peroxide mixture, although you need to be careful not to get burned by the latter. A copper-based fungicide might also work. Try consulting with your local cooperative extension – and good luck!

shooting star

how do I take care of a shooting star, it say's it likes morning sun but the leaves are all turning brown and dieing does that mean its getting to much sun or does it need to be trimed?

I was told that using coffee

I was told that using coffee grinds into soil with hydrangea that I want to blossom the blue color. Is this true for making soil acid and getting the blue flower?

Healthy again

Hi I replanted my hydrangea's in the shade and the leaves are no longer white! The sun seemed to have burnt some leaves and flower heads. They seem much healthier. But the burnt flower heads I cut off. Is it okay to cut them off after they bloom? Will I get more blooms this year? Thank you

bloom heads

There are so many types of hydrangea it’s impossible for us to give you a confident answer with this much information. Do you still have the plant tag? If so, Google the name/variety of the plant; you should get some links that provide detail on the plant and its blooming habit.

Hope this helps!


When the hydrangea is flowering and some flowers go over, do you regularly cut the flower heads for more new flowers?

I have 5 hydrangeas that were

I have 5 hydrangeas that were planted a year ago in Ohio. At the bottom leaves are really growing. On the stems from last year a few have leaves forming but most of them just appear to be dead. Should I cut them off or just wait and see what happens.

planting a potted hydrangeas

I received a potted hydrangea for Mother's Day. Can I plant it in my garden? When? Do I cut off the current blossoms or what? Thanks for any help. Btw, it's a macrbphylla Berlin, if that matters.

Hi Anne,

Hi Anne,

You can plant the hydrangea in the garden or you can move it to a bigger pot and put it outside. Please see our planting instruction at the top of this page. If the flowers have faded you can cut them off.

Help blue hydrangea has white leaves

Hello,I planted my Blue hydrangea (mathilda gutges ) beginning of May. I have 3 of them. I bought them from a flower shop in soil. Is it supposed to be just in bloom for a few weeks? Because I've planted them all in my garden. Two of them don't seem to be doing well. The leaves are turning white and brown and the blooms look brown. One gets sun all day. The 2nd one only gets sun in the morning and the 3rd gets sun in the afternoon. I live in canada, ontario. I'm not sure what zone I'm in. Will these rebloom next year? And should I move their locations this year? Thank you Angie

Mathilda Gutges Hydrangea in pot

I received a large Hydrangea plant with blue flowers in a pot for mothers day 2016. After a week some of the flower heads have started to wilt. I am wondering if I need to transplant it to another pot. Currently I keep it inside and have been watering it. When I removed the plastic pot from the pretty stainless steel pot i noticed water in the bottom of the steel pot. Of course i emptied the water but now am i not sure what i need to do to be able to have my hydrangea stop from wilting and some of the leaves are a little brown and yellow. Some of the flowers have also turned brown. Please advise me on what I need to do. I would like to still keep them in a container for or patio or have them inside. There are about 6 or 7 large mop heads on my plant. I live in IL. Thanks!!!

Hi Lisa,

Hi Lisa,

Pleases see our planting and care information at the top of this page. Hydrangesa need full sun in the morning and some shade in the afternoon. They grow best in rich moist soil. You can transplant your plant into a bigger pot with fresh potting mix. Place the pot in a sunny spot outdoors and don’t let the soil dry out.

30 year old PG Hydrangea trees

I have 4 very old PeeGee Hydrangea trees (30 + years!) that are not doing well this spring. They are multi-stemed trees which have just this year had a some "stems" completely die back, many more dead branches than usual. One of the most stressed specimens is showing a lot of new growth on all the stems at about 3' high. I am wondering if I should prune them way back?
There also appears to be some borer holes, but I don't know of a type of hydrangea borer. My rhododendrum (also very old) have dieback (which started at the end of last summer)that I think is from borers. Could they be also infesting these old Hydrangeas? All are struggling all at once!!

Hydrangea macrophylla

I just received this plant and wondered if it could be planted in a 1/2 whiskey barrell. I live in central Iowa and the barrell stays out year round. It would have 2 or 3 feet of dirt, morning sun and fairly shaded afternoon.

Hydrangeas grow well in pots.

Hydrangeas grow well in pots. Use good potting soil mixed with compost and keep the soil moist. You may need to protect the hydrangea from freezing temps in the winter depending on what type of hydrangea you have. If you can’t move the pot into a garage or shed you need to add mulch around and over the pot.

not blooming

I planted 3 bushes about 5-6 years ago. They bloomed 2x and haven't bloomed since. The bushes are very healthy. One bush is pure white, another is pink and the third is a combo of pink and blue.How can I encourage blooms?

Pruning helps to encourage

Pruning helps to encourage blooms, but you need to know what kind of hydrangeas you have to know when to prune. Do the plants get enough sun? Did you have a late frost that may have frozen the buds? See link below for more information.




Frost and twigs

Many plants succumbed to warm March and weeks of freezing temps in early April. My hydrangeas are now just giant twigs w green at the base. I see dead bugs along the long twigs and no more frost coming. What is my best plan of attaxk?
This is the addres of that they look like...


Hello, have a few blue plants that were very established. We had a late frost on Northern NJ while away. All of the plants had serious budding prior to frost, now dead. All I have now are giant twigs w growth at the base. Do I cut the twigs down low or leave them? Is this common w late frosts that you lose so much growth?


I too have the same problem, but it's almost July in NJ and I have new growth but lots of dead twigs like you. How long do you wait before pruning the old dead ones. Last year,I waited all summer. Thus year I think I pruned too early. I wish they would answer about original(northern nj reblooming )hydrangias mopheads

Hydrangea not growing like last season

I also am from Northern Jersey and had GORGEOUS blooms last year on 5 one year old, endless summer hyndrangeas that started in June and went way into the fall. This year had some buds on old wood which are no longer present and all new growth that is slowly growing. . .
did not fertilize and wonder if I should do it now and if I should cut back all the old wood - looks very strange to have the old wood "spidering" up and new growth at base. . . will these bloom this year or do we have to wait for next year?
Would love some advice!


I received a macrophylla White Robe hydrangea as a mother's day gift. I'm wondering if I can plant this outdoors. I live in southern Mn.

‘White Robe’ hydrangea are

‘White Robe’ hydrangea are hardy to Zone 6. You might have to enjoy your plant in a large pot.

Growing using starts

Can you grow a new Hydrangea using a start from a mature plant? If so, how?? We have many beautiful, mature Hydrangeas and wonder... Thanks!

how to grow hydrangea in Kansas

I was given a Hydrangea for Mothers Day and don't know if its climbing or a bush. I don't know my zone

Since we don’t know what your

Since we don’t know what your hydrangea looks like, try doing an image search to find out what kind of hydrangea you have. You can find your hardiness zone here: https://www.almanac.com/content/plant-hardiness-zones

Blue hydrangea

Hello! I just planted my new blue hydrangea (mathilda gutges) yesterday. I'm new to hydrangeas and I've always wanted a blue one. I assumed it was a perennial but then I read the little tag and it says to grow as an annual. So I'm basically devasted. I was so excited to finally have my blue hydrangea. Is it an annual or perennial? Thank you

annual or perennial...

Everything we can find about it indicates that it is a perennial—and a beauty! You might contact the vendor you bought it from and ask what that means on the tag. But it “appears” to be a perennial to us!

New to gardening.

Hello!! I live in Columbia south Carolina.
I just recently bought a small Hydrangea plant from lowes, and id like to plant it now. Any tips? The flowers are blue & purple, SO PRETTY! When is a good time to plant them?

Planting time

There is no time like the present to plant your hydrangea, Jessica. See above for suggestions on how to do that. Note your plant’s tag also for any special considerations. (There are soooo many varieties of hydrangeas on the market, you want to be sure you do right by yours.)

Best wishes!

I tried to grow hydrangea in

I tried to grow hydrangea in my country(zone 9) but it never grow in addition that I feed it and Created all conditions to grow well
pleas help me to know why its not success in my country (Jordan)


I have newly planted (small) hydrangeas. I want to encourage bushy growth for the first few years - I prefer them to grow in size at the expense of the blossoms. How do I do that?

Oh, that plants would do our

Oh, that plants would do our bidding! There are a ka-zillion varieties of hydrangea available today. (Ok, maybe half that—but it’s heaps!) We would suggest that you consult your local nursery for varieties that are prone to that and care for it accordingly. Some like sun, for example and some do not. Soil matters. Moisture. It’s the whole ball of wax. Or flowers.

Soe sources suggest that if you prune a branch back a Limelight-type hydrangea to a healthy branch or bud, more shoots will grow below the cut, making the plant more dense. Not every plant will respond the same way.

This may not be the answer you were hoping for; sorry. It’s the hydrangea world we live in…

I live in Chicago and bought

I live in Chicago and bought a hydrangea a couple years ago, it bloomed a couple of times but has since stopped. The spot were I planted it seemed a little cramped so I removed a bush a couple feet away and plan on transplanting the hydrangea there. I'm wondering why it stopped blooming and if transplanting it will kill it. The spot were it is and were I want to put it has full sun in the morning and shade in the afternoon.

Planting hydrangeas

I received hydrangeas in a pot as a gift and want to plant them in a full sun spot in my front yard... I read your article and I guess I just dig a whole, put some moist soil then plant away?

Hydrangeas grow best if they

Hydrangeas grow best if they get full sun in the morning and some afternoon shade. When you dig the holes add some compost to the soil.Water well and you may want to add some mulch around the hydrangeas to keep the soil moist.

hydrangea shrubs

when is the best time to plant in zone 7 n.c. I like to send my daughter for mothers day

Mother’s day is a good time

Mother’s day is a good time to plant the hydrangea in NC. The soil is warm and there is no more risk for frost.

Frozen hydrangea leaves

Will the hydrangea come back if they are limp from frost?

I live in South Texas and we

I live in South Texas and we have hot weather 3/4 of the year. My husband just bought me a Merrits Pink Hydrangea which i plan on planting in my back yard but it will be exposed to morning and afternoon sun and I'm worried that it won't make it. Any advice?

Most hydrangeas prefer full

Most hydrangeas prefer full sun in the morning with some afternoon shade. The hydrangea will need some protections during the hottest days in summer. Keep the soil evenly moist at all times and add some mulch around the plant to cool the roots and to conserve soil moisture.

Received a blue hydrangea plant in pot, I'm moving in 6 months!

I received a blue or purple hydrangea plant today at a baby shower, I'm excited to plant it but I am moving in six months. It is early April and I live in zone five in Illinois. Can I leave this in the pot until the fall when I move in late September or early October? If so, should I leave it outside or keep the plant inside? How often do I water it? Thanks!

Hydrangea planting

I live in CT and although it's April and warm during the day we are still getting below freezing temps in the evenings. Is it safe to plant Annabel and endless summer hydrangeas this week? I'm going out of town, so need to plant this week. Thank you!

Hydrangea in the Mountains

I live in the BC mountains where it is not uncommon to get 4 ft of snow throughout the winter (I'm not exagerating, I live at the base of a ski hill). I was given 4 white mophead hydrangea. What can I do protect them over the winter? Thank you for any advice.

Snow usually doesn’t harm the

Snow usually doesn’t harm the bushes as it is a protective layer against the cold. To be safe encircle the bushes with a wire cage and fill the cage with a lightweight mulch (hay, straw, leaves). This will protect the flower buds on the lower section of the old stems, which will bloom the next year. Leave the mulch around the plants until after your last frost in the spring.

Hydrangea in Florida

I live in west central Florida in the Tampa bay region. It's really hot here April thru October. Do mop head hydrangeas grow in this hot humid climate?

Hello, I bought the plants in

Hello, I bought the plants in the pots last fall and left it outside throughout winter in the snow, rain and storm. I'm in Canada, and it's spring now just wondering if the plants are dead or will it bloom again and what do I need to do.

It all depends on what type

It all depends on what type of hydrangeas you have. A few varieties are winter hardy and may have survived the winter cold. Wait and see if they will show any new growth this spring. If they do we suggest that you plant them in the ground. See our planting and care information at the top of this page.

If you live in Canada you are

If you live in Canada you are in a zone 5 or lower and if you left them in pots, they will not have survived the winter. If you planted them in the ground and cared for them properly before winter, they should come back. In Canada (other than Vancouver) you cannot leave plants in pots outdoors during the winter months.


I bought a BEAUTIFUL BLUE HYDRANGIA and I planted it in the flower bed in my yard. The next morning it was wilted, looked very bad. I watered it and it didn't change. After the 3rd day it was no better so I cut off all the blooms thinking it would do better and wouldn't struggle as much. But still no change. What should I do. I live in Pearland, Texas zone 9


I live in a tropical country, just about 5 degrees north of the equator, so naturally we get a lot of sun year round, and even during our 'winter' which is really the dry season.
I'd like to know if I can start hydrangeas from seed since seedlings are unavailable here. Also, what special care tips do i need to be aware of?
Looking forward to your response.

Can I plant these hydrangaes?

Hello, I bought some 6in potted hydrangaes from Aldi grocery store. They are the kind you give as a gift and leave in the pot per the tag in the pot. Can I plant these in my yard instead? I live in middle Tennessee. The tag didn't give much information besides the lighting and watering suggestions. Thanks!

Aldo hydrangea

I just bought 8 of these today from Aldi as well. They are called "Merritt supreme" and are a variant of H. macrophylla. You can plant them in Tennessee. I'm in zone 5 and planning to plant mine as well. Enjoy!

These hydrangeas have usually

These hydrangeas have usually been grown for a one-time display. The plant has been timed specifically to produce many big blooms quickly. The plants have been grown in a greenhouse and may not be winter hardy. You can try to plant them outside but they may not make it.

Aldi hydrangeas

I bought 5 of these from Aldi in 2014. I planted them on the northwestern side of the house where they get late afternoon sun. They came back in 2015 but took awhile to get established but they did grow and had some blooms. It is now 2016 and they seem to be doing quite well. At least all are poking through the ground with new growth. I live in central MN and didn't do anything special to winter them over.

I have buds on the wood of my

I have buds on the wood of my endless summer hydrangea. What should I do? I live in middle Tennessee.

Non-blooming hydrangea

I live in Zone 6b and have a Nikko blue hydrangea that bloomed beautifully for at least a decade. The past couple of years it has become totally confused. It leafs out well in the spring and looks very healthy. But no flowers at all in the spring or summer. Then in October I get a couple of measly blooms. I've continue to fertilize regularly. What's up?

Nikko Blue blooms on old wood

Nikko Blue blooms on old wood and the new flower buds for the next year develop starting in July-August. Maybe you have had some late frosts the last few years that have killed the new buds. Pruning sometimes helps the bush to bloom. Best time to prune is right after they bloom in early summer before it develops the new buds for the following year. The hydrangea needs good soil that drains well. Add some compost to the soil around the bush. Also make sure that your fertilizer is low in nitrogen. A 10-10-10 would be OK to use.

Nikki blue hydrangeas

I have the exact problem. My hydrangeas are about 10 years old, bloomed beautifully for years and the past couple of years very few blooms. I live in zone 5 in southern Illinois. I would love some answers to the blooming question. Perhaps they have a short life expectancy? I really miss the large blooms.


I was giving a mophead 3yrs ago it was only about a ft tall. I planted it poor thing has survived major flash flooding within a month of being planted and a few small floods but he still keeps rolling along. I haven't pruned it because I'm afraid I'll do it wrong. It has bloomed the last 2 years with a creamy/green color flowers BUT it's only had at the most 5 heads on it. I live in zone 7 in Northwest Georgia. What can I do to have this little survivor have more blooms? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

You can prune the hydrangea

You can prune the hydrangea in the summer after it has bloomed and before it forms new buds for next year. Prune in July or early August to be on the safe side. Always remove dead stems and cut off any spent flowers. Sprinkle a low-nitrogen 5-7-2 granular fertilizer around the base of the hydrangea in the spring and fall.

Hydrangea endless summer

I have 2-3 hours of full morning sun followed by 3-4 hours of dappled sun but then the rest of the day is full sun, will this be a problem for subject plant? Also, how soon can I plant & can I except a good full summer bloom the first year.

Thank you

Plant as soon as you don’t

Plant as soon as the night temperatures are above freezing and the soil has warmed up a bit. See our planting advice above. The sun in your yard is enough for the plants to thrive. You may have some blooms this summer depending on the size of the plants. Good luck!


I thought I was protecting my older hydrangeas by surrounding them with a cage and putting leaves around them. I didn't know that maple leaves should not be used. All my trees are maples! Will this damage my hydrangeas for this year?

Growing plants in Trinidad West Indies

I am living in Trinidad and want to grow roses, hydrangea, lilac, heather, butterfly bush and wisteria. Is it possible to grow these in this climate and where can I purchase them?
Thank you

We were just given a blue

We were just given a blue hydrangea plant today (Feb 20) and right now it is just a bunch of 1 1/2' sticks in a large (5 gal?) container. I see that I should wait until early Spring to plant it - but how should I take care of it until then? I assume it's currently dormant - but should I be doing anything until planting time?
Thanks so much!!

Put the container in an

Put the container in an unheated garage or shed and water every 2 weeks. You can move the container outdoors when the night temps are above freezing.

Thanks so much!!!

Thanks so much!!!

Planted baby hydrangea plants, nothing coming up yet?

I bought a box of baby hydrangea plants from Sam's Club last year, and planted them through my yard. I live in GA, so it's pretty much all red clay, but I used Miracle Grow planting soil to plant them in the yard. There were small leaves on the little plants when I placed them in the soil, but they quickly died off. I didn't see anything come back all year last year, and I'm wondering if I need to go buy more plants, or is there a chance they could come up this year still?

Please see our planting and

Please see our planting and care advice at the top of this page. It’s best to plant in a soil/compost mixture and then fertilize once a year in late winter or spring. You can wait and see if your plants will have new growth this spring. Chances are that they are dead. If you get more hydrangeas this spring purchase plants that are bigger and more established. These will have a better chance to survive in your garden.

Non-flowering Dwarf Hydrangeas

I'm in upstate NY and have had my dwarf hydrangea for about 10 years. It has only flowered the first year. I prune it in the Spring and only cut back the totally dead stalks. I can see small dried up buds on them sometimes. Could you help and maybe tell me what I'm doing wrong?

Do not prune the hydrangea

Do not prune the hydrangea this spring. If your hydrangea is a variety that produces flowers on old wood you should leave the dead looking stems on the plant. Also make sure that the hydrangea gets enough sun. If you live in a climate that gets frosts the new buds can be killed by a late frost. Fertilize with a phosphorus-rich fertilizer or add bone meal to the soil.

Are hydrangeas stems, leaves

Are hydrangeas stems, leaves or flowers toxic or poison to cattle?
I'm keeping baby calves in my back yard and want them to be safe.
Thanks for your help. Debbie

Hydrangeas can be mildly

Hydrangeas can be mildly toxic to horses and cows. It would be best to keep them away from the plants.

mophead hydrangeas in texas

I have recently moved to Texas (zone 8) and the house we bought has to mophead hydrangeas about 5 ft tall. They have mostly lost there leaves now, should I trim them down or what should have I done to these beautiful plants? I came from up north, and I have never had a lot of outdoor plants. Need help, please.

It’s best to deadhead (remove

It’s best to deadhead (remove faded blooms) and prune mopheads in early spring. Prune stems back to first healthy pair of buds and remove any dead branches.

Maple Leaves as Cover

In the "care" segment of this page I saw where it said not to use maple leaves as cover. Why is that? I have a bed cleared right now, with the intention to plant hydrangeas there in the spring. There are maple leaves on it now, as a compost. Is that going to hurt the hydrangeas?

Some gardeners don’t like to

Some gardeners don’t like to use maple leaves around established hydrangea bushes as they tend to mat and may suffocate the bush. If you chop the leaves and mix them with soil they should be fine in the bed that you have cleared.

My hydrangea did not bloom at

My hydrangea did not bloom at all this summer. I trimmed it late winter. I live in zone 9 and in the past I have gotten huge heads on my bigleaf mop head. I am wondering when it the right time to trim the hydrangea in zone 9? It is on the north side of my house getting very early morning sun, not the direct sun during the hottest part of the day, but sun from the west at the end of the day. Thank you

Bigleaf mop head hydrangeas

Bigleaf mop head hydrangeas should be pruned right after they flower in the summer. The hydrangea develops new buds for the following season on old wood so if you prune in the winter you are cutting off the new growth. Hydrangeas grow best with morning sun.

care of hydrangeas

We have hydrangeas planted in mid-September around a new patio. Some are very brown (look dead). We have watered religiously and have had plenty of rain. Is this normal? (Hardy Hydrangeas are what we have)

Hi Marvin,

Hi Marvin,

Most hydrangeas turn brown during the winter months. Keep watering until the ground freezes. Add some mulch around the bushes after the ground is frozen. Hopefully all the bushes will come back next year.


wich age of hydrangea macrophylla hamburg is proper for transpla

I want to purchase Hydrangea macrophylla hamburg for our greenhouse. I want to have its blooms next spring. But I do not know which age is proper for transplanting it and when I must transplant it.
please guide me.

Winter Care

Ok this says to cover with leaves in winter and every one says not to cover which is it.?

We suggest to encircle the

We suggest to encircle the shrub with chicken wire and fill the cage with a light-weight mulch (hay, straw, pine needles, or deciduous leaves).


my hydraendas were pruned 2 years ago & haven't bloomed or grown since. Should I fertizilze or put peat moss around them? live in central nj & we have such brutal winters. Any suggestions will be so appreciated

Add a couple of inches of

Add a couple of inches of compost or aged manure around your hydrangeas. Create cages by wrapping chicken wire around a few stakes and place around the hydrangeas. Put leaves into the cages around the bushes being careful not to brake any branches.

I just had several hydrangea

I just had several hydrangea planted and was very disappointed in what I saw. The plants are all tall, thin with fragile looking lettuce like leaves and not one blossom on any of them. Is this normal for hydrangea in late September?

Hi! I have a potted

Hi! I have a potted macrophylla White Robe which has a white mop head bloom from the Spring that has turned greenish. There have been no other blooms all summer, but I suspect this is due to some overpruning in June. My question is: do I leave this greenish-white bloom on the plant? Or cut it off? The plant is very healthy, growing new green leaves continuously.
Also - it's been on my balcony all summer with direct light from 8-11am roughly. Wondering where best to keep for the NYC winter.

You can cut off the flowers

You can cut off the flowers once they turn green. To winter it over in the pot and have it rebloom next year it needs a winter rest. Once the leaves have dropped off move it to a dark, cold indoor spot such as an unheated basement or garage where it can stay around 30-40 degrees. Water sparingly. In mid-January bring it back into bright light but not in direct sun and still keep it cool - around 50 degrees for about 2-3 weeks as it makes its transition from dormancy back to life. Then it is ready for a sunny window and warmer indoor temperatures 60-65 degrees. Resume normal watering. New leaves should should sprout and it will bloom soon after. If it seems to have outgrown its pot move it to a larger container.

I have the macrophylla white

I have the macrophylla white robe hydrangea in a pot in our screened area that gets lots of light and afternoon sun. Can I just plant it in a huge pot and keep it there and not put it in the ground? Also, we are in FL, so it is hot here. I'd just like some white color on our lanai/scr. porch. I'd appreciate your opinion.

Hi, Renee, There are so many

Hi, Renee, There are so many hydangeas these days! Our sources suggest that this would be fine in a pot. Keep the soil moist—not soggy (yellow leaves falling off are a sign of dryness) and see that it gets at least 4 hours of indirect light per day.
Plan to replot after blooming and cutting the stems back by half. Keep the plant cool during the winter, then move it to warmer conditions in late winter to help to bring it into bloom. Summer temps may be too hot for it; it likes 45–65°F.

I have had my mophead

I have had my mophead hydrangea for many years it has turned into a lacecap this year. Why has this happened please?

I recently had 2 vanilla

I recently had 2 vanilla strawberry hydrangeas planted in my yard. They are large in size for new plants and have beautiful plentiful flowers that were pink and white. The flowers have started turning brown. The plant does not look distressed although we have had a dry hot spell. I live in zone 5. What if anything should I do. The shrub and flowers are no dead and I water most mornings unless soil feel damp. I am new at this plant but love the look

The blooms turn a darker red

The blooms turn a darker red later in summer and then fade and dry on the stems to a brownish shade. You can leave the dried blossoms on the plants over the winter. Prune in late winter or early spring.

I have raised hydrangeas for

I have raised hydrangeas for several years. I have had lots of enjoyment from their beauty and ease of growing. I have read several "how to prune" articles but yours is by far the easiest to understand. Thank you for clearing up some questions I have had for several years about the different varieties of this beautiful shrub.

I have a number of shrub

I have a number of shrub hydrangeas. They have white lacy flowers that turn rose or red in the fall. They are beautiful and healthy, the only problem is they attract masses of house flies for the first 2-3 weeks they are in bloom. Is there anything I can do to discourage the flies.

bay leaves in between the

  • bay leaves in between the hydrangea flowers; their aroma wards off flies.
  • Crush up 1 tbsp. of mint leaves and place them in a small pouch. Place the pouch underneath the hydrangeas, or hang it next to the plant to repel flies. The pungent smell of the mint leaves keeps the flies away from the flowers. Replace it weekly to maintain the odor's potency.
  • Read more : http://www.ehow.com/how_797462...

  • bay leaves in between the hydrangea flowers; their aroma wards off flies.
  • Crush up 1 tbsp. of mint leaves and place them in a small pouch. Place the pouch underneath the hydrangeas, or hang it next to the plant to repel flies. The pungent smell of the mint leaves keeps the flies away from the flowers. Replace it weekly to maintain the odor's potency.
  • Read more : http://www.ehow.com/how_797462...

Place bay leaves or mint leaves among the hydrangea blossoms. You can also try to spray the blossoms with neem oil when you first start seeing the flies.

I received a small potted

I received a small potted Hydrangea "Grace" as a gift. I have several "Endless Summer", I'm in Zone 5, and they have done beautiful for years. I know nothing about this particular variety, nor have I ever planted one so small. Can you please help me out with some information? Thanks !

Hi Lisa, Hydrangea

Hi Lisa,
Hydrangea macrophylla  ‘Grace’ is a newer cultivar and can be blue or red depending on the acidity of the soil. It has large attractive flowers and is cold tolerant. If can keep the hydrangea in a container until it is bigger and then transplant it into the ground or you can plant it in a protective spot now and keep an eye on it to make sure it grows well.

Oh Dear! My wonderful husband

Oh Dear! My wonderful husband decided to prune overgrown shrubs in the front of our home and it's July 19th... our hydreangea I think is a panicle type. It's grown very large and was blocking a window so my husband thought he would please me by cutting it back while I was out. When I returned I nearly fainted! The hydrangea had tons of blooms on it and would likely be blooming in the next few weeks :( The blooms are typically white and then turn a beautiful mauve color in the Fall. ALL the blooms were cut off. Will this shrub bloom again next year or did he cut too aggressively and cut off next year's blooms? I keep looking at the shrub and wanting to cry... It's just a shrub but we have a small yard with beautiful plantings and I was so looking forward to the big white majestic flowers. I live in central NJ and have not done any major pruning to this shrub before as we moved here 5 years ago and the shrub always produced beautiful blooms with no trimming or pruning!

This kind blooms on new

This kind blooms on new growth so yes it will bloom next year .just trim down in the fall.sorry you lost all pretty blooms

Hi~ I've had 3 Hydrangea

Hi~ I've had 3 Hydrangea Plants for many years. I live in NJ.
The green leaves are always full n lush looking however the flower seems to not mature. It stays flat n bud looking. I've never had a flower on any of the plants. Can you please give me some ideas of how to help the plants flower. Thank you!

You're not alone in the

You're not alone in the absence of blooms on your hydrangeas, Lori. There are approximately 23 species of hydrangea these days, so it is important to know which you've got and what it needs and likes for conditions. Some like a little shade (north side of a house, edge of a woodland), some tolerate a lot of sun, so too little may affect their performance (flowering). Plants grown in hot climates tend to want more shade than those grown further north. In some cases in higher-heat areas, increasing watering will enable plants to tolerate more sun. Hydrangeas grow best in moist, well-drained soil. Impropoer pruning can affect bloom. Some bloom on last year's growth, some on this year's. Poorly timed pruning could have eliminated the flower buds.
You might take a leaf from, or photos of, your plants to a local nursery to help you to identify them and so improve chances of flowering.

I have a macrophylla

I have a macrophylla Twist-n-Shout. I planted it late last summer. It as 4 blooms on it. But, only a few of the buds have opened. We have had lots of rain and cloudy days here in northern Wisconsin I have fed it twice so far, when we finally had some sunny days. Will they open when we get more sunny days?

I have brown spots on my

I have brown spots on my hydrangeas they almost look burned, they get morning sun and afternoon shade. Here in southern NC the temperature has been 100°+ the past few weeks could this be a factor? I water them every other evening Is there anything i can do to clear my bushes up i dont wanna loose them. . .

I'm having the same problem

I'm having the same problem too!! Any suggestions?

Hi, Jessica and (below)

Hi, Jessica and (below) Valerie: This would seem to be a fungal infection such as anthracnose or leaf spot. Unfortunately, not much can be done to save infected parts, so the idea is to prevent it from spreading. For starters, don't water from the top, as this disturbs the spores and trickles them down to new prey. Carefully remove and dispose of (as in burn or throw away in a bag; don't put in your compost) all infected leaves. Also remove the very top layer of soil (you are trying to get rid of as many spores as possible). Continually monitor/do this. In the meantime, you can be making some compost tea by putting a shovelful into about 5 gallons of water and letting it sit for a week. Then strain and spray on your plants. Another option is an 10:1 water/hydrogen peroxide mixture, although you need to be careful not to get burned by the latter. A copper-based fungicide might also work. Try consulting with your local cooperative extension -- and good luck!

I have 2 Hydrangea's a dark

I have 2 Hydrangea's a dark pink which is doing wonderful and a pink, which was supposed to be blue and is not doing wonderful. The flowers died and the leaves turned brown and shrivled up so I pruned off the dead flowers but now the whole plant looks dead. I bought both of them from a nursery. Should I leave the dead looking one and see what happens next year or replace it?

Hi, I have recently moved to

Hi, I have recently moved to Daly City California and I am really looking forward to growing something different from roses and cactus! I love hydrangea but my dilemma is I am living in a third floor apartment with a deck that only has sun for a few hours in the morning then shade and fog for the rest of the day. With these conditions is can I grow hydrangea in a pot ony deck????? Please advise or give a different suggestion!!!! When I look around I don't see much for plants growing in decks!

If you don't get 6 hours of

If you don't get 6 hours of sun, it might be better to consider a plant that likes some shade such as impatiens or begonia. A nice bright flower is fuchsia.

I have a hydrangea bush in my

I have a hydrangea bush in my new house, pretty sure it is the macrophyla type. It is June and we have had dead flowers on the bush all winter and spring. New blooms seem to be growing on other stems, but I really want to prune off the dead flowers. Can I do it now? Or do I have to wait until the new flowers bloom?

Hi Jane, You can cut off the

Hi Jane,
You can cut off the dead flowers, making the cut above the first healthy pair of leaves right below the flower.

I planted endless summer last

I planted endless summer last year and they did wonderful. I covered them over winter and this year they all started growing again. I mulched two of the plants, because I ran out of mulch,(I have three plants). The two I mulched have been really slow growing now. The one I did not is twice the size when they all started off the same. Not sure what's going on, can you help? And I made sure mulch is not directly covering base.

Hi Jill, Make sure that all

Hi Jill,
Make sure that all your plants get the same amount of sun. Full morning sun with dappled shade in the afternoon is best. When adding mulch you don't need to water the plants as much. Make sure to give the plant with no mulch more water. Also check to see that the plants are planted at the correct evel and that they are not planted too deep or too high.

I purchased some LA Dreamin

I purchased some LA Dreamin hydrangeas from Lowe's. I'm in SC zone 8. The leaves are starting to turn brown. I am new to gardening and trying to figure out the proper care for them.

Are the hydrangea leaves are

Are the hydrangea leaves are turning brown around the edges? Usually, this is a moisture issue. Sometimes a newly purchased plant was already dried out and it can be hard to remoisten. Sometimes, the plant can be root-bound, too.
Gently dig the plants early in the morning to check for both conditions. If needed, lightly loosen the roots with your hand. You can also soak the root ball in water until it's moistened through. Make sure you maintain uniform moisture for your hydrangeas.
Location can also be an issue. If they're getting sun burnt, they'd do better with light shade.

Please help! I was given two

Please help! I was given two root balls attached to what appears to be a twig that I was told are hydrangeas. ..how long after planting could I expect the shrub to mature and/or grow? I live in the US in IL and have been told that hydrangeas do quite well here

Help! My hydrangea was

Help! My hydrangea was accidentally mowed as it put out it's new growth. It was maybe 8" tall at the time and it had very little old growth as it was only planted last summer. Will it rebound and regrow, or do I need to just replace it?

Hi Laura,   If the plant

Hi Laura,


If the plant was in the ground long enough to establish some good roots it will grow back. You may not get any blooms this year.

Hi, I got 6 Macrophylla

Hi, I got 6 Macrophylla Hydrangeas (different colours, pale blue, lilac, purple, pale pinks and dark pink, I did have a white one but it died). I live in the UK Zone 8b, it's spring at the moment and temperatures are about 15-20c in the day and around 5c at night. The leaves on some of them are turning white, some leaves are turning purple on the edges and others are looking healthy. On the blue, lilac and pale pink ones the flowers have started to brown and die off, the dark pink one is doing very well and only lost one flower head, the purple one and one of the pale pinks haven't bloomed yet but have buds on them and they're doing ok. As they're in pots I have been watering them everyday. I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong, they are in full sun, but got these as I was told at the garden centre that they prefer partial shade but will tolerate full sun (there is no shade in my garden). Any tips are most welcomed. I can't figure out why some are doing well and some are dying off (not sure if it helps but the flowers turn brown and crispy first and then the leaves turn white afterwards and die off. Many thanks.

I live in the NY ZONE 6 and

I live in the NY ZONE 6 and this winter snow and ice broke my Panicle bushes. They were standing about 6-7 feet tall and our now about 3-4 feet. As we get into spring it doesn't look like there is growth happening yet. Do you think they will come back

Your bushes will probably

Your bushes will probably have some new growth. Make sure to remove any still ramaining damaged branches.

I'm in Destin FL and have 7

I'm in Destin FL and have 7 hydrangeas. We had a freeze in February and two of mine were damaged. I removed the damaged leaves and they're beautiful again. I thought for sure I had lost them. Every leaf fell off. They all have new leaves and multiple magenta blooms :)

04/22/2015 - I've read

04/22/2015 - I've read EVERYTHING and do not see my issue being address. My Blushing Bride Hydrangea has the lower branches almost on the ground and coming out very curved... unlike the Blue Endless Summer one that I have. We've had a ROUGH Winter, so now, is early Spring for me... at least I THINK it is. I went out to prune them the other Day, and wanted to prune those curvy branches away. However, I could tell that they had buds on them so didn't want to prune, lest I lose some Flower Power, if you know what I mean :) SO, should I just leave them be, (fully realizing they will likely be ON the ground in a minute) or should I cut those branches off? They were soooo low, when I went out today, I thought I had new plants off shoots (does that even happen?) because the leaves have started growing and it looked like new leaves coming out of the ground - they were just the leaves on the low curvaceous branches :( HELP.

Hi Natalie, If you prune the

Hi Natalie,
If you prune the lower branches now you will loose the blooms. If you don't prune you can try to support the stems with a wire cage or individual stakes and twine. After the flowers fade you can then prune the branches.

I have a Lady in Red

I have a Lady in Red hydrangea that has lower branches touching the ground, and they have rooted. I just gave a start to my neighbor. They all look like young hydrangeas. If you want more Blushing Brides, I wouldn't cut them off.

I live 4 houses back from

I live 4 houses back from ocean and 2 houses back from sound; how will hydrangeas do here?

I would love to grow some

I would love to grow some hydrangeas. But I think I might have a problem that has not been addressed. I have a lot, and I mean a lot of deer. They eat almost everything that I plant. I have been using deer spray to keep them away and it seems to be working. There are a lot of my plants that they do not eat. What about hydrangeas. I don't want to make a salad bowl for them.

Sorry but hydrangea is not

Sorry but hydrangea is not one of the least deer-resistant plants. If you're looking for more deer-resistant plants to lure deer away, see our list here:
If you're looking for ways to keep out deer, the most reliable method is a tall fence but see this page for a list of ways to deter deer in the garden:

I found a motion activated

I found a motion activated sprinkler stake that works wonderful. It connects connects to a regular garden hose. It was $30-$50.

In a recent windstorm,

In a recent windstorm, something scraped the bark on several spots of my vanilla strawberry hydrangea. More than just a fingernail scratch, but not quite a "gash". Is there anything I need to do to protect the wounds or just let it heal on its own? We just planted it last August, I think it's probably 2 or 3 years old now and so far it's been extremely healthy. Plenty of bud growth already this year and the new scratches are completely green. I just don't know if there's something I should do to protect it particularly because our temps right now are fluctuating severely; yesterday was 70 and it's a blizzard now so I'm worried about the extra stress on the plant. Zone 7a. Thanks!

Hi: I live in Central Mexico

Hi: I live in Central Mexico and have bought a pink one and a blue one (no info. labels) from the garden centre. I plan to plant them in dappled shade - will they flower ok? Also how long will they flower here - some plants in my garden flower year round here while in Canada these same plants are summer flowering only. Your site is the best plant info site I've seen - many thanks

Hi Joan, Hydrangeas need sun

Hi Joan,
Hydrangeas need sun to develop flower buds so early morning sun is best with shade in the afternoon when the sun is the hottest. If the air is very dry where you live you need to mist the plants so that the leaves don't dry out. Also water often and add mulch around the plants. Not knowing what type of hydrangeas you have it's hard to say how long they will bloom.

I live in Michigan my

I live in Michigan my Annabelle buds but only a few flowers pop I need help.

Hi Lisa, Your buds may have

Hi Lisa,
Your buds may have been damaged by a late frost. Also, most hydrangeas grow and flower best with morning sun and some protection from the hotter afternoon sun.

Lisa- I agree, maybe the

Lisa- I agree, maybe the blooms have been affected by freeze. have you considered planting yours in containers and moving them indoors when freezing weather is imminent? I have 7 in containers here in Florida and I love being able to move them as the sun becomes hotter as the seasons progress. I also have 3 Hibiscus and 4 citrus trees, all in containers. My husband hates bringing the large pots into the sunroom but it keeps all my pretties happy :)

Hello- I want to plant


I want to plant hydrangeas near my retaining wall. Do they have invasive roots that could damage my retaining wall?

Hydrangeas have a small

Hydrangeas have a small compact root ball and will not damage your retaining wall.

The Hydrangea that has

The Hydrangea that has flowered in the living room in the spring can now be placed out of doors. Cut back the foliage to about 2cms above the old wood (recognizable by its slightly darker tint) and plunge the pot into the ground in a sheltered, well-shaded spot in the garden. Gradually increase watering when new growth appears, and feed regularly.

My hydrangeas I have had for

My hydrangeas I have had for three years and no blooms and it does not grow very much what can I do mine was a gift for mothers day and was in a foil wrapper my mother in law got one the same time as me and hers is big and blooms all summer what am I doing wrong

I've read that hydrangeas

I've read that hydrangeas that are sold in the foil wrapped pots are a species intended to only bloom for a short time and will not grow into a shrub or re-bloom if transplanted into your garden. Sorry.. Houseplant only. Buy your next hydrangea from a nursery and not a florist.

Kristy- what zone are you in.

Kristy- what zone are you in. It's not entirely true that a foil wrapped hydrangea can't become an outside plant. I have two that were given to me that I've successfully repotted and introduced to the outside. One has even given me a new plant that I've also repotted :) depending on your zone, you can move them outside when your outdoor hydrangeas are in the same stage of flowering. I will say that they won't tolerate the heat and cold as well for a bit, so containers are best so you can move them around.

I just received a hydrangea

I just received a hydrangea plant for my fathers funeral, we live in east Tennessee, and i would like to be able to keep this plant, but don't know anything about when, how and what to do to keep it healthy until i can plant it. Please help.

Hi Judy, "Gift" hydrangeas

Hi Judy,
"Gift" hydrangeas are often different from hydrangeas bought at a nursery. They have been grown in a greenhouse to display lots of flowers at once and may not perform well after this one display. They may also not be suitable for your growing zone. But, you can give it a try. Remove foil around the pot and make sure the pot has drainage holes. Put the plant in a window in a cool room and give it water just to keep the soil moist. Do not overwater. Plant it outside in the spring. Good luck!

I live in zone 9 (Phoenix,

I live in zone 9 (Phoenix, Az) which type of hydrangea would you recommend and what special planting precautions should I take? I've tried several times and have had no luck.

I received a Peppermint Twist

I received a Peppermint Twist hydrengea for Christmas and it's beautiful. I would like to plant it in my yard. I live in Folsom CA and am not sure how to accomplish this. The plant is indoors and the blooms are fading. Do I remove blooms when they are dying? Do I cut it back farther? How can I keep it healthy until I can plant it outdoors? What exposure is best.? Thanks for your help.

Hi Kathryn, You can remove

Hi Kathryn,
You can remove the faded flowers but don't prune the plant. The hydrangea will do best in a location with morning sun and afternoon shade. Make sure to keep the soil moist.

I know very little about

I know very little about plants and plant care. I live in Georgia and planted my hydrangea macrophylla in late October or early November. Shortly after, the leaves turned a dark green and started wilting. Now all the leaves have fallen off. Some leaves had light green spots on the tips. I'm not sure that it is getting enough sun and don't know if it has correct drainage. Would I be better to transplant it where it will get more light or leave it?

Hi, Jackie, There are many

Hi, Jackie,
There are many types of macrophylla, and it's difficult to pinpoint the exact cause of your problem, but here are a few ideas:
• powdery mildew
• a fungus
• root rot (which will cause apparent wilting)
Hydrangeas gorw best in moist, well-drained, rich soil. They like a bit of shade in the afternoon, but not complete shade.
Winter is not a good time to transplant, esp early winter as you do not know what weather might be ahead. Wait until spring and see if the plant comes back.
For more information on growing hydrangeas in Georgia, see this page:http://extension.uga.edu/publi...

Its spring here in New

Its spring here in New Zealand, the Hydrangeas have a lot of new growth and are about 1 meter tall
They are about 10 years old or older
Last week my mother inlaw moved house so we had to transplant them
Unfotunately because of the poor soil (it was a little top soil ontop of a clay base) the soil did not adhere to the roots, therefore they were transplanted soil free
I have replanted them and watered but they are wilting
Should I
A... water them each day till they become right
B... Cut them back
C.. fertilize them
Or leave them and hope for the best

just received a small

just received a small hydrangea plant, I live in Chester, Pa, can I plant it outside now or should I wait until spring?

Hi, Yvette: Provided that it

Hi, Yvette: Provided that it is dormant (i.e., you didn't just get it from Florida and it is still in bloom) and the ground is not frozen (obviously), sure, go ahead and plant it now. Like immediately -- as your first hard frost is usually around November 14. Be sure to water it generously while it is still waterable.

I have what seems to be a

I have what seems to be a pretty well aged mophead hydrangea. I am pretty sure the previous owners pruned it incorrectly because there was only one bloom on it. I have a dog that will not stop peeing on it and the leaves have turned spotted with brown spots and the sticks look a little burnt. What can I do to fix this poor plant?? Also it seems to not grow properly, like the leaves are to heavy for the stems or something, what can I do to fix this as well?

I pruned back my endless

I pruned back my endless severely in September last year and had only a few blooms the summer after. Now it is October and I have many buds and flowers starting to grow. Will my plants get back to the normal bloom times?

I have a ever blooming

I have a ever blooming hydrangea that was planted by a landscaper and is two years old but has never bloomed. The plant looks extremely healthy but has no blooms. What should I do? Some people tell me to cut it back down to the ground, others tell me not to do anything.

Make sure that your hydrangea

Make sure that your hydrangea gets morning sun and some shade in the afternoon. Keep the soil moist but not too wet. And do not over-fertilize. One application in the spring i enough. Everblooming hydrangeas do not need regular pruning. Only prune if the hydrangea gets overgrown, has dead wood, or shows signs of disease.

add organic fertilizer. the

add organic fertilizer. the soil is probably worthless!

We have a "little lime"

We have a "little lime" hydrangea that was purchased this past spring, we are in Ohio, zone 5, and are not sure when to prune it back. All the blooms are still on it, do not know if it is safe to cut them off. Neighbors say to not cut back until spring, which is what I see in many of your comments, but none of them referred to the "little lime" variety. We are thinking of covering it with burlap over the winter and last winter was so bad here. Please advise.

Hi Alex, Little Lime is a

Hi Alex,
Little Lime is a Hydrangea paniculata, also called a hardy hydrangea. It blooms on new wood and should be pruned in late winter or early spring.

How can I root a hydrangea

How can I root a hydrangea that I clipped from the yard of my office building. I want to grow it in my own yard.

I had, until today, a

I had, until today, a beautiful full nikko blue hydrangea bush but my husband, trying to help prune it, cut it down to the ground. Is there any way that it can be saved? If I feed it will it slowly come back. I am desperately upset over the bush. Please give me some advice!

"Nikko Blue" is a

"Nikko Blue" is a summer-blooming hydrangea that blooms on old wood. It should be pruned just after flowers fade, usually in mid- to late-July. Now being October your husband may have cut off the new beginnings of buds for next season. If it is an established bush it will probably grow back next spring but without any blooms.



Hi Marilyn, Don't prune the

Hi Marilyn,
Don't prune the bush. Leave it alone and you should see blooms next summer.

I want to include some

I want to include some beautiful dried limelight hydrangeas in my flower box for fall and early winter. How can I keep them away from the moist soil? Will it work to stick the stems in the soil. I don't want them to blow away.

You can stick the stems into

You can stick the stems into the soil. If you want to secure them better you can twist some thin wire around the stems and then twist the wire end around stems of other plants in the flower box.

I have 6 hydranget plants

I have 6 hydranget plants which all summer grew beautifully green with no flowers
Could it be that they were cut back too. Low. In the spring

Lyn, It depends on the

Lyn, It depends on the variety of hydrangea. Many hydrangea types form their flower buds on the "old wood" in late summer/fall for the following summer's blooms. If those stems are removed (pruned) in the fall, winter, or spring, the bloom buds will be removed, and there may be little or no bloom the following summer. See our pruning tips above.

I love hydrangeas but I've no

I love hydrangeas but I've no luck in growing them. I have 2 plants that are in the mostly shaded area, as directed on the card that came with them, and I haven't had a bloom on them in 3 years! Their leaves are wonderfully green and the plants had flowers when I planted them. Suggestions??

Also, I received a plant late last year. I spoke to a person that is supposed to be a specialist who stated that I could keep the plant in the container on my deck for the year. Well, when Spring came it was very wet to the point the plant appeared dead. I cut off the top of the plant with hopes that it would start to grow from the root but nothing happened. Should I try placing it in the ground or is it lost at this point?
Thank you so much for your help.

Our property lacks much in

Our property lacks much in morning sun light. Is it advisable to plant a hydrangea that requires such light in a good deal of afternoon sun so long as there's ample shade? Thank you

Hydrangeas prefer early

Hydrangeas prefer early morning sun and afternoon shade. If this isn't possible, it would be better to have a shady spot with dappled sun than a good deal of hot afternoon sun.


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