View Full Version : Hydrangeas

Edwina's Secretary
08-03-2003, 08:19 PM
I got all confused as to where to respond to the hydrangea questions...so here we are...

The white type of hydrangea bush is called water fall or snow fall ....they are white. Some hydrangeas are pink. Here is one that was given to me as a potted plant which I later added in my garden.


By putting aluminium sulfite (or is it sulfate??) in the soil the blooms will be the more traditional hygrangea blue.

Lizbud and Amberlee....it's the best I can do (have spent days trying to find the answers!)

08-03-2003, 09:21 PM
Not sure if this is of any help but...

There are several species of hydrangeas.

The ones you see that are tree like in form with a white, almost cone like flower in July, is Hydrangea paniculata or "Tree Hydrangea or " Panicle/PeeGee Hydrangea." It was a Victorian favorite but is considered a landscape monstrosity by many modern horticulturists. I love them, though. They can be cut back very hard in late fall and will come back beautifully. Here are a couple of pictures on the "PeeGee;" one of the inflouresence (you can see it's concial, not rounded) and another of the entire tree.

Another species producing white flowers (blooming earlier, in June up until September) is Hydrangea arborescens or "Smooth Hydrangea." This is considered a woody plant in warmer climates, a herbaceous one in colder climes. This is the common, "Snowball Hydrangea" and sounds like it's the one you have in mind!

The picture posted is Hydrangea macrophylla or "Bigleaf Hydrangea." This is the one most commonly known to homeowners, often sold as greenhouse plants at Easter and is very widely planted in seaside communities where they thrive on the salt air and cooler temps. If you receive one as a gift and want to plant it outdoors, remember it was grown and kept in a greenhouse/hothouse so it will need to be acclimatized. Here on Cape Cod they are planted everywhere. Right now they're putting on quite the magnificent show! These hydrangea cultivars have 2 subgroups:

A. Hortensias, the one pictured, with large, heavy, flowers (corymbs) that can be found in white, red, pink and blue. The cultivated shades can vary/be altered by the realtive acidity/alkalinity of the soil.

B. Lacecaps, with a combination of non-showy, fertile flowers surrounded by a "ring" of very delicate, showy, non-sterile flowers; a very delicate looking, "lacey" flower! They can be found in pink or blue. Here's a picture of a "lacecap." One of my personal favorites!

Other hydrangeas include Climbing (petiolaris) and Oakleaf (quercifolia) a very plain, white flowering hydrangea planted primarily for it's stunning fall leaf coloration.

The list goes on, including ones with variegated leaves, dwarf varieties, etc. And yes, the addition of aluminum sulfate encourges blueing by increasing the aciditiy (lowering the Ph) of the soil while the addition of lime, which increases the Ph and thus the alkalinity, encourages pink/red. Hope this helps...not sure what the original question was!!:D

Here's a link to great grower/retalier of hydrangeas...lots of pics and info!

Hydrangea catalog/info (http://www.hydrangeasplus.com/)

08-03-2003, 10:21 PM
As lovely as they may be, I dread them. That's one allergy I KNOW who I inherited it from. When I was a teenager, one Sunday in the summer, someone had brought a big bunch of hydrangea to be the altar flowers. Well, Dad and I were both snuffling, sneezing and blowing our noses so much, we eventually just left church - we felt like we were disrupting the service for everyone else!

We had to apologize and explain to the pastor afterwards that it wasn't a comment on his sermon, honest!

So lovely - but you can HAVE 'em.

08-03-2003, 10:53 PM
Edwina's Secretary,

This hydrangea is gorgeous. I love the look of the delicate
lace like petals of the bloom. Although I've never treated my
plants with anything, I do have all colors except white.From
what Sandra said about hydrangeas, I don't have the tree like kind just bushes. There is one bush that has both a pink & a
blue blossom.(I took a pic earlier this week) I wonder if that is
unusual to have different colors on the same bush? Anyway,
I like them a lot. They are a very "showy" flower and the
blooms last well into the colder weather. Thanks for the info.

08-04-2003, 01:13 AM
Thanks for the info. {{{hugs for doing the research on this}}}

08-04-2003, 02:40 PM
Liz, with the macrophylla hydrangeas, it is possible to see varying hues of pink, turning purple to blue, all on one plant. Sometimes one inflouresence will exhibit several shades of color. The root system is deep and wide on a mature plant and depending upon where those roots are feeding, different parts of the plant may be feeding from a more acid or alkaline soil!

Lut posted a pic of a Hydrangea aborescens, cv. "Annabelle. I think that's the "white one" you're thinking of!:)
Lut's Hydrangea (http://petoftheday.com/talk/showthread.php?s=&threadid=31701)

08-04-2003, 03:03 PM
Originally posted by tatsxxx11
The root system is deep and wide on a mature plant and depending upon where those roots are feeding, different parts of the plant may be feeding from a more acid or alkaline soil!
Lut's Hydrangea (http://petoftheday.com/talk/showthread.php?s=&threadid=31701)

This is what I've heard too. They are like a strip of litmus paper. Kind of like the kids science experment where you take a flower, splice the stem, and put each half in different colored water.

The part of the country you live in helps determine what color Hydrangea you have, but its fun to know that you can play with it a bit.

Edwina's Secretary
08-04-2003, 03:34 PM
Wow Tats! What a treasure trove of knowledge about hydrangeas. You're the best!

08-04-2003, 08:53 PM
Thanks for all the info and gorgeous pictures everyone. I had
no idea so many of us liked flowers. :D :D

p.s. Have you all seen the roses that Anna_66' grew this
summer? Wow, Beautiful.... :)