The Q&A Archives: Hydrengea

Question: I planted a beautiful lilac/blue big leaf hydrengea. The biggest flower ball started turning tan in color so I removed it. I only removed the flower not quite down to the first leaf. I'm wondering if I did the right thing or should i have left the flower ball on the plant. Will a new bloom grow in or near where I cut the faded flower ball?

Answer: Your hydrangea will only produce one flower per stem so cutting off the spent flower won't harm your plant. In fact, cutting the flowering stem down to the main branch is a good idea. This will encourage the development of new flowering stems. Your hydrangea is probably a macrophylla and it will bloom only once per season, but each of the flowering stems may develop and open flowers at different times during the season. Next December or January cut all of the stems down to about 18" above ground level. Your hydrangea will respond by developing lots of flowering stems for next year's floral display. Enjoy!

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