The Q&A Archives: Brown Hydrangeas

Question: Help!! The petals on my hydrangeas (endless summer) are turning brown. The plants also seem a little droopy but no petals have fallen off. What could be the cause and how do I prevent it from happening? I live SC and the plants receive full sun throught out the afternoon. I was watering them at night to make up for the daytime heat but have since stopped. I now water them everyday first thing in the morning. I also bought a fungicide but the foilage appears to be healthy with no brown spots. They're also still putting out blooms. Im so confused. This is my first time working with hydrangeas so I have no idea as to what Im doing. Thanks!!

Answer: What you describe sounds like typical behavior from a hydrangea that gets hot afternoon sunshine. Although plant tags will suggest hydrangeas will grow in full sun, most droop when exposed to afternoon sunshine. They typically perk up by the next morning. If you want your hydrangea to look happy and healthy, move it to a spot that receives morning sun (some sun is essential for flowering), but is protected from hot afternoon sunshine. Until you can move it, cut off the prematurely aging blossoms as soon as they begin to develop brownish petals. Hydrangeas like moist, but not soggy soil. Daily watering may be a bit too much for your plant. Soils that are saturated won't have any oxygen in them and can suffocate the roots. Rather than watering every day, try watering deeply every 3-4 days.

Best wishes with your hydrangea!

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