Listen. I am no gardener. I can keep a very limited amount of very specific (read: hard to kill) plants alive [evidence HERE 😉], but I would like to learn! We have two groupings of hydrangeas at our house, one on the east side and one on the south. Pretty sure the plants on the east side were pruned too far back, and thus they’ve stopped blooming. I don’t want to mess up the new blue hydrangeas on the south side of the house, so I turned to my Instagram buddies [HERE] for guidance. Here are their top hydrangea tips for beautiful blooms!
- Watering DO: water 2-3 times a week in hot months using a soaker hose laid under the mulch, but don’t over water. Check to see that soil is moist NOT soaking wet, otherwise the hydrangeas can drown. Sadness!
- Watering DON’T: Don’t water during the sunny part of the day – the water will evaporate and/or if it’s on the leaves and blooms, they can burn easily. (Thus, use the soaker hose.)
- To prune or not to prune…that is the question: In the fall, do NOT cut the old stems back. New growth (mostly) happens on old wood. Get ready for an ugly bunch of sticks in the fall, but it’ll be worth it in the spring when blooms appear!
- Bloom colors: The acidity in the soil can affect the color. Many recommended using coffee grounds to change the color! Need to research this more.
- Wilting: It’s okay if they wilt in direct sunlight as long as the bounce back in the evening. But that might also mean they need more water, too.
- Sunlight/location consensus: Plant hydrangeas where they will get some morning sun or dappled sun. Too much shade = few blooms. Too much sun = scorched plants.
(Wilting in the afternoon sun, but they’ll perk up in the evening. Do yours do this too?
Tip for cut flowers:
I do have one cut hydrangea trick I learned from my MIL. Before you put the stem in water, clip it at a diagonal and quickly dip it in alum, a pickling spice that helps draw water up into the flower. When I forget this step, my cut hydrangeas definitely don’t last as long. Not really sure on the science behind it, but it’s an inexpensive and easy step for longer lasting hydrangea bouquets!
Do you guys have any other tips or tricks? Do you agree with my IG buddies advice above? I’m sure so much of this has to do with the specific type of hydrangea plant and the zone in which you live, but this is a start, at least! I really want to learn to keep these beauties alive and blooming, so hopefully these hydrangea tips for beautiful blooms will help you, too!