The Q&A Archives: Winter Protection For Oakleak Hydrangea

Question: How do I protect oakleaf hydrangeas for the winter in the Midwest?

Answer: Oak-leaved hydrangea has leaves shaped like oak leaves.
The plant grows in sun or shade and prefers a rich, moist
soil. It may not be as hardy as other hydrangeas. The top
usually dies back during the winter and it needs shelter
from high winds. Once frost has killed the tops of your plants, remove the dead stems and foliage, then mulch over the roots with compost, pine boughs or a loose pile of leaves. When spring weather arrives you can remove the mulch. For general information, Oak-leaved hydrangea transplants easily and has a very coarse texture and good red fall color. The hairy young twigs are reddish. The growth rate is slow. The plant grows 4 to 6 feet tall and spreads 3 to 5 feet. The flowers, produced in midsummer in panicles, are at first white, then fade to pink and then tan. Enjoy your plants!

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