Hydrangeas are without a doubt one of the most popular flowers in the Garden at Antony Woodland this month, so we thought we would take a closer look and share some of our Hydrangea wisdom with you!
First discovered in Japan, Hydrangeas now grow all over the world and can usually be sourced throughout the year. They start to flower in Britain in July and usually remain in season until November.
The most popular form of Hydrangea is the mophead variety of Hydrangea macrophylla with its pom-pom shaped clusters of individual flower heads. Other varieties include the Lacecap Hydrangea macrophylla which features crown-like rings of flower heads, and the more conical shaped Hydrangea paniculata. Personal favourites for this time of year include the Classic Hydrangea in Pimpernel Blue and the Verena Classic Hydrangea, both of which show beautiful Autumnal colour without being too obvious.
Caring for Hydrangeas:
As you may have guessed from the name Hydrangeas need a lot of water! Here are some of our top tips for keeping your Hydrangeas hydrated:
- The best way to water your Hydrangeas is to spritz them or simply dip them straight into the water. They drink more through their heads than their roots.
- The stems of any flowers should be cut at a 45 degree angle both when you arrive home and every few days, but if your Hydrangeas have a woody stem then be sure to cut up the stem too. This will maximise the water they are able to drink.
- To revive planted Hydrangeas fill your sink with enough water to cover the pot and wait until the air bubbles stop, then stand your Hydrangeas to drain. In 20 minutes they should look fresh again.
For anyone who is looking to grow their own Hydrangeas, here are some words of floral advice:
- The colour of your Hydrangeas will be determined by the pH level of your soil; alkaline soil produces pink flower heads and acidic soil produces blue. It is possible to alter the pH levels, but due to the limescale in some areas this is tricky, and most Hydrangeas will revert to a pink colour.
- Cut your Hydrangeas back each year to keep them bushy rather than leggy; preventing them from having too much stem and not enough foliage. Mid September is the time to cut them. Be sure to place them into a vase with space around their heads and plenty of water until they stop drinking.
- And, of course, keep your Hydrangeas well-watered both whilst they’re growing and afterwards.
We hope that you have found this guide helpful. For more regular images and stories from the Garden, follow along on Instagram or Facebook and if you would like to book a guided tour or just wander the garden at your own pace, then please click here to visit the online shop.
[Many thanks to the talented Clare Dearden for her kind permission to use her beautiful images.]