Hydrangea

BOTANICAL NAME: Hydrangea species
PLANT CARE: Deciduous, Half Sun, Semi Frost Hardy, High Watering, High Maintenance, Pruning Required, Non-Indigenous
CATEGORIES: Shrubs and Perennials
FLOWERS: The first flowers appear in November, with flowering carrying on well into the new year (they are often known as Christmas roses in South Africa). Many of the old cultivars continue blooming into autumn
COMMON NAME(S): Bigleaf hydrangea, French hydrangea, lacecap hydrangea, mophead hydrangea, penny mac, and hortensia.
ORIGIN: Southern and Eastern Asia
FOLIAGE: This plant has large and oval foliage with serrated edges.
USES IN LANDSCAPE DESIGN: Lovely grown in tubs on a shady patio. Flowers are ideal for the vase. Cut flowering stems in the hardwood, otherwise, the flower will not last when picked.
PLANTING INSTRUCTIONS: Planting: Blue hydrangeas need a soil pH of as low as 4.5, so add a lot of acid compost when planting to make it more acid. For pink hydrangeas, the soil does not need to be as acid (pH 6.0), so plant with ordinary compost.
Watering and feeding: Water deeply, particularly during hot, dry spells. Use hydrangea food at regular intervals throughout the growing season. Keep the plants well mulched.
Pruning: Prune at the end of winter. Cut back the previous year’s growth to three pairs of buds, to promote sturdy new stems with large blooms.
RECOMMENDED VARIETIES: ‘Bodensee’ has sky-blue flowers, depending on the soil pH. ‘Daphne’ has pink flowers and retains its colour. ‘M. E. Moulliere’ has white flowers, aging to a pinkish hue.

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