Pink hydrangea

June is moments away, which means that Hydrangea season is upon us! These much-loved plants produce massive blooms that are as ideal for landscaping as they are for a cut flower display in a vase on your dining table.

Usually, Hydrangeas are very easy to care for. But there are a few mistakes you can make that might hinder your Hydrangea plant’s performance. Before I move onto that, here’s a Hydrangea that suits any size of garden, doesn’t need staking and flowers all season long:

Hydrangea Hi-Fire – a compact purple-flowered charmer

Hydrangeas are highly coveted – but they can take up a lot of space. For those with small gardens, a large Hydrangea bush isn’t the most convenient option. But don’t fret! Hydrangea Hi-Fire is a compact variety that will be very happy in a smaller container, so it’s ideal for small gardens, balcony gardens and more. It will grow in a mounding habit, up to 150cm in height and 120cm wide.

Not only is it compact, but its exceptionally strong stems don’t require staking, so it’s low fuss, too. Watch as your minimal-maintenance plant springs to life, producing large, deep purple-hued flowers in acidic soil; you can also change the colour of these flowers to red by adding lime to the soil in order to increase its pH level.

Place your Hydrangea in sun or semi-shade and enjoy this sea of purple or red all summer long, with Hi-Fire flowering from June to the first frosts in September/October.

5 Hydrangea care mistakes

Purple hydrangea

Image c/o Pixabay

  1. Too much water

Yes, newly established plants always need more water – that’s true for any UK garden plant. However, once your Hydrangeas have become established in your garden, watering them as much as you did when you first got them is a no-no. 

If the weather has been dry and sunny, a drink every two or three days is adequate. If in doubt, check the dryness of the soil around the plant; if it is dry below three inches, it’s time for another drink.

  1. Impatience when it comes to colour changing

As I mentioned, you can change the colour of most Hydrangeas (not white ones) through altering the pH of the soil. You can do this by adding certain alkaline or acidic substances, which will gradually turn the soil alkaline or acidic. However, the key word here is ‘gradually’. If you want to change the colour of your Hydrangeas, you can’t do it quickly. The process can even take up to a year!

  1. Over-fertilisation

This can cause fertiliser burn, which causes Hydrangea leaves to appear scorched. Once per month during the blooming season should be enough; spread it around the drip line of the plant (the circle on the ground where water falls off the leaves) rather than the base, and water deeply.

  1. Too much sun or shade

Different varieties of Hydrangeas have different light requirements: bigleaf Hydrangeas (Hydrangea macrophylla) love the morning sun and afternoon semi-shade; oakleaf Hydrangeas (Hydrangea quercifolia) prefer a semi-shaded patch for as much of the day as possible; and panicle Hydrangeas (Hydrangea paniculata) adore full sun.

However, if in doubt, most Hydrangeas will grow well in partial or dappled shade!

  1. Poor draining soil

This is a big one. Well-draining soil is a must with Hydrangea plants. This means soil that won’t get waterlogged, as these plants do not like to sit in water (their roots will rot). However, if you have clay or sandy soil, this doesn’t mean that you can’t grow Hydrangeas. Use a soil improver to change the consistency of the soil, and over time you should be able to grow wonderful Hydrangeas!

Have you got Hydrangeas in your garden? Let me know in the comments below!

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  • Sandra Perry

    Love the colour of Hi Fire. Order placed.

    May 31, 2021
  • Suzanne

    My runaway bride isn’t looking very happy after all the wind we had a couple of weeks ago, also should this one been in full sun or half n half please oh its in a pot 😁

    June 5, 2021
  • Any information about hydrangeas in pots that’s different from the above

    June 5, 2021
  • Deborah Manning

    I have two white hydrangeas in my garden, which unfortunately I incorrectly pruned last year! They have grown back and are green and busy but no sign of any flowers as yet. Hope I haven’t ruined it for life. Thanks for the tip about too much water, I always read they need loads of water, so have probably been over-watering too.

    June 8, 2021
  • Sandra Gallagher

    Do ‘runaway bride’ hydrangeas need to be treated different from the normal hydrangea? I purchased 2 of them last year. Treated them exactly the same as my other ones (i.e. fed and watered) but both have died. Such a shame as they are beautifiul when in full bloom. Any tips as I will try again.

    June 10, 2021
  • Compost happens

    I dug up 2 unnamed plants and one Wedding Gown, 3 years later they are going to bloom. I have a Miss Saori that is blooming for the first time (took 3 years), I have Bar Harbor, Nikko Blue, and another rebloomer all flowering. Two with no flowers from cheap thrills dept, and 2 paniculatas that I just chopped back!

    July 3, 2021
  • Gina Bailey

    I am mad about hydrangeas I have them in the front garden in pots in the back garden have taken delivery of my Hi Fire and it is looking good. Had a Glam Rock which was looking rather sick dug it up and put it in a pot and this year it is lush and looking stunning.

    July 5, 2021

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