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Plant of the Month December- Hydrangeas
They come in an array of different shapes and sizes. From heavenly and fluffy looking mopheads, to lacecaps, compact snowball, odd oakleaf,and the peculiar looking Paniculatas. However, regardless of the type, they can look stunning as long as you know what to do.
So to make sure that you get the most out of your Hydrangeas, we thought we’d give a quick run-down on choosing the one for you, and making sure it lives up to its potential.
This delightful lace-cap produces a mass of gorgeous blue flowers with pale blue centre.
Grows around 1.5 x 2m
Hydrangea Rasberry Crush
This gorgeous, compact shrub produces clusters of blood red flowers with lush dark green foliage turning crimson in autumn.
Grows around 1 x 0.6m
Produces rounded double white flower heads on a compact bush with dark green foliage.
Grows around 0.6 x 0.6m
This utterly stunning hydrangea has unusual globular flowers with a mild fragrance. Generally produces cream-white flowers that fade to blue, pink or purple depending on the acidity of the soil. By adding Yates Liquid Hydrangea Blueing or Hydrangea Pinking you can change the colour to suit your preferences.
Grows around 1.8 x 1.8m
Hydrangea Princess Julianna
Rich, creamy mop head flowers open as white and then in autumn turn pale green when planted in shade, or slightly pink when grown in the light.
Grows around 1.5 x 1.5m
CHOOSING YOUR HYDRANGEA
Size often matters, as does shape. While you can shape it through pruning, choosing a variety that’s right for the space is important. If you’re tight on space a variety like Snowball may be a possibility, or the variety Ayesha may work better if you need a bigger more impressive shrub.
Full Sun/Part Shade. While either is okay, they tend to flower for longer when they are in dappled light or when protected from the afternoon sun.
Growing Hydrangeas becomes much easier if you take care from the beginning.
As with most plants, if you have healthy soil with great structure, then you are already half way there.
Dig a hole at least twice as deep and twice as wide as your pot. Back fill while mixing in compost and sheep pellets.
Hydrangeas like moist free draining soil with plenty of organic matter. Fertilise with sheep pellets in spring & summer. Use a liquid feed like Kings Ocean Grow in Spring to promote strong growth.
Hydrangeas are unusual in that the flowers of some varieties will vary in colour depending on the soil conditions. Add the Yates Liquid Hydrangea Blueing or Pinking for coloured blooms.
Deadhead throughout the year by removing spent flowers.
In winter, prune out any dead damaged or diseased wood back to a decent looking bud. Be careful not to damage these buds as these should form flowers during the next season. Cuts should be made at a 45° angle sloping away from the bud.
PETS, DISEASES AND PROBLEMS
Can be susceptible to fungal diseases like Powdery Mildew. Avoid wetting the leaves while watering and if possible & water in the morning. Treat this by removing the infected parts and if it’s bad spray with FreeFlo Sulphur.
Rarely targeted by insects. If there are any problems, an oil based spray like Aquaticus Glow should be suitable in most cases.
Make sure that you spray in the evening to reduce the chance of leaf burn.