The Q&A Archives: Patio Bouquet Hydrangea

Question: We purchased this awesome hydrangea at Home Depot here in WI and planted it in a nice location near the house. Then we read the label, zone 6 ( -10 degrees). Is there any chance of saving this plant in zone 4a ( -20) winter? How should I prune it and when? Can I save it with a heavy application of mulch, or perhaps a rose cone? I'm willing to go the extra mile here. It's the most beautiful hydrangea I've seen anywhere. Help!

Answer: Your Patio Bouquet Hydrangea is Hydrangea macrophylla Kardinal. The flowers are spectacular! The biggest challenge you'll face will be trying to keep the plant from freezing down to ground level each winter because macrophylla hydrangeas produce flowering shoots on the previous year's wood. I think it's worth a try, though. Some gardeners report success with the following method of protection: Create a large cylinder out of chicken wire and set it over the plant, then fill the cylinder with leaves or compost to act as an insulating blanket. Hope this works for you!

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