Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey 88 Lipman Drive, New Brunswick, NJ 08901-8525Phone: 732.932.5000
Edith Wallace, Ph.D., Master Gardener, Passaic County Elaine Fogerty Barbour, Passaic County Agricultural Assistant
Fact Sheet FS1152
Hydrangeas In The Garden
There are fve dierent species o hydrangea commonly grown in New Jersey and they have dierent owers and cultural requirements. Themost common hydrangea is the biglea hydrangea with blue to pink owers. It is sensitive to rost and pruning at the wrong time, which willboth result in no owers.
Common Hydrangea Species
(biglea, hortensia or forists’ hydrangea)is most oten seen with its spectacular pink or blue fowers. It is used as a garden shrub, in pots by forists, and or resh or dried fowers. The many cultivars o this species may bedivided into mopheads and lacecaps. The mopheads havelarge balls o fowers. Lacecaps have a center o small non-showy fowers surrounded by an outer ring o showy fowers.For both types, fower color may be shades o white, red or purple in addition to pink or blue. Flower color is determinedindirectly by soil acidity. The bluest shades are produced onsoils with a pH o 5.0 to 5.5. Aluminum sulate applicationsmay induce blue fowers. Less acid soil (pH 6.0 to 6.5 or slightly higher) is associated with pink fowers. Typical growth is rom3’ to 6’ high by up to 10’ wide. Biglea hydrangea bloomsmainly on stems grown the previous year, thereore spring pruning usually results in no fowers. Dead wood should beremoved. Frost may kill the potential fowering shoots.
is hardy to zone 6 and rarely does well in zone 5.It thrives as a garden plant in seaside communities.
‘Endless Summer’ is a one o the rost resistant cultivars that is less likely to be damaged by late spring rosts and bloomsin both spring and summer.
(panicle or Pee Gee hydrangea) is thelargest o the commonly grown hydrangeas, sometimesreaching a height and spread between 10’ to 20’ with theappearance o a low-branched tree or large shrub. It is one o most cold hardy hydrangeas. The white or yellowish-whitefowers, in 6” to 8” panicles, later change to purplish pink and weigh down the branches. Faded blooms may be prunedto make the plant more attractive. Pruning may also be usedto maintain the shape o the shrub. This species fowers onnew growth so it may be pruned in late winter. Consider cultivated varieties i planting this species.
(smooth or wild hydrangea) is native tothe eastern United States. This ast growing species may reacha height and width o 3’ to 5’. It is sometimes dicult todistinguish rom
as the fower clusters o cultivated varieties may be similar. The leaves o
are broader and oten bigger with long (1” to 3”) petioles.
petioles are ½” to 1” long. Some cultivars have beenselected with larger fowers. As
blooms on current growth it can be prunedin late winter. It may be drastically pruned (to the ground) or pruned only to remove old fower heads. Dried fowers may be used in fower arrangements along with dried
H. querciolia.Hydrangea querciolia
(oaklea hydrangea) is easy to distinguishby the lobed (oak lea-shape) leaves. These leaves may develop spectacularly handsome all colors (red, bronze,purple). The plant typically grows 4’ to 6’ tall and can becomequite wide due to its habit o suckering. The fowers, on last year’s growth, may also be spectacular with white foretsin panicles over 1’ long. Native to the southeastern United