Gardening Tales

Greenhouse Tales-Hydrangea

August 04, 2015
I adore Hydrangeas, they are the most delicate of blooms, and add just the right touch of grace

and charm to a garden, walk way, terrace or as a flower arrangement displayed in our homes.

As we plan our gardens for our new home I have begun to create various inspirational boards and one

of them is dedicated to hydrangeas.



I am gathering information from many resources and I was surprised that these

delicate and yet hardy plants (for some gardeners) bloom from early Spring to late Fall.


How pH levels affect the color of Hydrangeas

  • The color of the blossoms are affected by the pH,
  • Higher levels of alkaline in the soil the pinker the blooms will be.

 Isn't that just so neat?  I think I would like to have pink and blue in my gardens...



Hydrangeas Require Lots of Water

  • Hydrangeas love their water.
  • Hydrangeas are always  thirsty and must be kept hydrated.


Sounds to me as though I will need a specific flower bed filled with rich soil emollients and

protection from the harsh Summer Sun.

This Old House Online has some valuable information on the topic of growing Hydrangeas.



How to Make Cut Hydrangeas Last Longer

  • For a longer lasting bouquet cut the stems in the early morning,
  • Cut stems with sharp scissors or knife.
  • Cut on an angle.
  • Allow the stems to "condition," in warm water before arranging.
  • To ensure that cut flowers last longer ask your florist for HydraQuick or use the Alum Dip Method.



Hydrangeas just exude old-fashioned charm, and are unrivaled in the shrub world.

My husband and I really feel as though the old garden hydrangea, also known as the

French Hydrangea would bring the cozy and classic feel we are striving for in our

French Country home.

Do you grow Hydrangeas, do you have any tips to share?

Thank you for joining me today!

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  1. Hydrangeas... Every time someone posts about them, it breaks my husband's heart. :-) He is the gardener around here. He put Hydrangeas in, in front of our front patio, years ago. They had a magnificent blooming, for one year. People who had gone by our home, were loving them, as well as we ourselves were of course.

    And basically, that was that.

    He read everything he could, about how to support them. And did everything. And still, they had quit. -sigh- Oh they make very nice green bushes, in front of our patio. But! No more gorgeous blooms!!! -pout-

    Enjoy the ones you plant!!!! I surely hope they thrive, for you.


    1. Tessa, does your husband cut the plant back every year? If so that is why you are not getting blooms. Most hydrangea bloom on old wood, meaning the wood that grew the year before. But perhaps you already know that.

  2. Hydrangeas are magnificient!! I've always been fascinated by the changes in color based on soil. Pure gorgeousness here in the post today Jemma!
    Please stop by and add a link or two to our #stylefocus Linkup for Lifestyle bloggers (other lifestyle bloggers are welcome too). We love to have your heartfelt style in our linkup showcase!
    xx, Heather

  3. Hello Jemma, I do not have any hydrangeas in my yard but I do love their pretty blooms. They will be a wonderful plant for your new place. Congrats to the winner of your giveaway! Have a happy day!

  4. I have two small hydrangea bushes in my backyard. The newer one has blue blooms - that's how I purchased it. The other bush has pink blooms and it's been in my soil for over a year, so I suppose the one with blue blooms will eventually change to pink. That is, IF it lives. It has developed a fungus on the leaves. I read info online about it and made a homemade concoction in a spray bottle to spray on the leaves. I hope it works! And, you're right - hydrangeas are water hogs. Even here in northern IL, I have to water mine every day.

  5. Hydrangeas are one of my favorites. When we lived in Dallas, I could not get them to grow. In Alabama, they would grow like crazy, but wouldn't bloom. So frustrating! At the new house, the builder planted one lone hydrangea bush. We've been driving over there nurturing it while no one is at the house. I so want it to grow. When I buy cut stems at the store, I use alum and they will last up to 2 weeks, sometimes longer. I've heard that sticking a nail in the soil close to the plant will change the color also, as will a penny.

  6. I love Hydrangeas - I think they do represent old fashioned charm. Were these photos taken near you? I love that first one with the entrance way!
    Hey your husband is a great 'picker' - thank you I am excited! I will email you my address.

  7. I just got on the bandwagon and planted two bushes that I bought from a farmer...they are each 2-3 years old so they flower magnificently. I just fertilize twice a summer and keep the soil moist. I don't like them for cut flowers---I wait til they just start to get stiff and then bring them in for drying. Then I have them for months.

    A blogger friend from Texas once wrote to me that she wished she could have hydrangeas. I googled and found a variety she could grow. Somehow we can find a way if we want!!

    Jane xxx

  8. GOod morning dearest Jemma!!!!!!! First of all, I somehow missed the soap giveaway! I must have been overdelighted to see your post and see your photos when I came to that post that I missed the giveaway announcement! teehehehee

    OK, you are talking about my favorite flower shrub out here in Minneapolis. The prominent color out here is WHITE and do we grow the prettiest, puffiest blooms around. Very few people here have the "Endless Summer" variety that are blue, developed especially for our insanely cold winters. I think that variety still needs a few more years/decades maybe, to improve their hardiness. We tried them once and the shrubs stayed very small, yielding maybe TWO blooms each summer. We pulled them out, and I told my husband I wanted the white Anna Belle that do best here, but he said, "THEY GET TOO BIG!" - Well for me, that's what I want!

    They plants are remarkably hardy. In the summer, they are the stars on summer's stage. In the winter Jemma, their dried blooms STAY on the shrubs, hanging on tightly through heavy snow and speedy winds. They blow me away with their tenacity!

    I think they will make the best garden accent for the French Country home you desire. Oh the colors are so lovely from the pink, fuschia and blue, but yes, the watering is the key, and that PH balanced soil! I LOVE YOUR BOARD! And you are right; I had no idea they could start their season so early because when we were in Carmel in early June, sure enough, there were oodles of gardens with these pink and blue beauties!

    Well my dear, dream, plan, enjoy and in no time, you will have your dream house and garden.

    Off to go walk? Anita

  9. I see you've been doing your homework about hydrangeas! I have some Endless Summer hydrangeas and usually have good results. My soil is very alkaline so most of my blooms are pink to purple. One person I know in Virgina has such acidic soil al of hers are blue. I love the white hydrangeas too. The Limelight and Annabelle are my favorites.

  10. Hydrangeas are one of my all time favorite flowers. We had two massive ones in our yard growing up and I will always remember how beautiful they were. I have about 10 in my mountain garden and I love bringing them inside and placing them all over the house.

  11. I adore hydrangeas! They're big, they're bold, they're perennial and hardy (here anyway). And they dry beautifully too :). I think they will compliment your new abode so nicely Jemma, and pink and blue would be gorgeous. It is indeed cool that the soil dictates the colors. I think I like blue since they're not as common, but no matter what, they're all pretty.


  12. I just love hydrangeas! I have two bushes along my side porch. I tried changing the PH when I first got them but it didn't work. I bought the blue variety plant but they only bloomed pink in my yard. When I added the solution I did get a multicolor pink/purple flower which was gorgeous. The solution was messy though so I didn't do it again. I only got one bloom on both plants this year. So sad. Not sure what is going on with them!

  13. Jemma, did I win the peppermint soap? Please let me know by e-mail, and I will send you my address. Thank you. Your hydrangea pictures are wonderful. You know, I never gave much thought to this flower until I saw them gracing the screen on my blog friend's posts. They are really outstanding, and range from blues to purples to pinks, so pretty. I'm glad you are thinking about planting them at your new home. It sounds like you have so much information about them that will be helpful for you.

    Enjoy the rest of the summer days, Jemma.

    love, ~Sheri

  14. Jemma, I too love Hydrangeas! The beautiful blue and pink ones do not grow too successfully here in UT. You rarely see them. I have one in a pot. When ever I have planted them they make last a year or two at the longest. I have 5 plants in my garden. A limelight tree, which puts on a show every year. An Annabelle, which is medium sized and has white blooms, now turned green. I have two Str. Vanilla's that are only a couple years old and still quite small and also a Incrediball that is only a year old. Can't wait until I have large bushes full of blooms! Your inspiration photos are gorgeous! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  15. I love hydrangeas, too, Jemma, and I have two plants, but not much luck with them. Last year, I got two flowers from one, and none from the other. Maybe I should give up?

  16. Jemma... hydrangeas are my favorite flowers of all time. We live near the ocean and the salt air give the hydrangeas the most gorgeous color blue. Great post! Have a good weekend!

  17. Oh how I wish we could grow them here, but it's just too doggone hot and dry. I just love them but have to get my "hydrangea fix" with the faux ones. At least the faux seem to be getting better every year! I'll just have to enjoy yours, Jemma!

    Warm hugs,

  18. I adore hydrangea! I think it is important to remember that most of them bloom on old wood, so you don't want to cut the plant back. Also most that you find at a store already potted, don't often do well returning year to year. The ones from a nursery will do well.


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