Hydrangeas forum: Hydrangea not blooming.

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Name: Theresa Maris
Bowling Green,KY (Zone 6b)
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tgarden711
Jul 9, 2013 6:36 AM CST
I bought a 4 inch pot of Nikko Blue and I have been waiting 2 years for it to bloom. I fed it Epsom slat and added compost to the soil. Plant looks healthy, has grown to a nice bush but has never bloomed. Any suggestions?
Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
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Xeramtheum
Jul 9, 2013 6:46 AM CST
I've found hydrangeas tend to bloom when they have "bigger shoes". Also the ones I have that get good morning sun tends to bloom more than the others that are in shade. Is yours still in the pot?
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Name: Theresa Maris
Bowling Green,KY (Zone 6b)
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tgarden711
Jul 9, 2013 6:49 AM CST
No, it is in the ground and probably does not get much sun but I thought Hydrangeas liked some shade.
Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
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Xeramtheum
Jul 9, 2013 7:58 AM CST
Probably wanting more sun then - the best is morning sun and afternoon shade or all day dappled shade - at least for mine.
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Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Jul 9, 2013 10:20 AM CST
When are you pruning? Where are you?
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Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
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Xeramtheum
Jul 9, 2013 10:48 AM CST
I'm in the same zone as you are, 8 - Summerville, SC. I usually prune around the middle to end of February because in our zone we have unexpected warm ups and if you prune any earlier than that you risk stimulating the plant into producing new growth when one of these warm ups occur which you don't want because of errant freezes. In my experience, unlike other plants, hydrangea is not as sensitive to soil temperature as other plants are - they rely more on ambient temperature for clues as to when to wake up.
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Name: Julia
Washington State (Zone 7a)
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springcolor
Jul 9, 2013 11:36 AM CST
Sound like your plant needs more sun. Be careful about pruning as Nikko Blue blooms on last years growth. When pruning these I use the method of taking 1/3 out every year.
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Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Jul 10, 2013 1:04 PM CST
They are ubiquitous in deep shady spots in the south, so unless it's a new cultivar of some type, I'd be surprised if sun was the issue. It sounds like you may have the type that blooms on old wood. If so, when the flowers are finished is the optimal time to trim for shape and size, then not again until it's leafed out. At that time in the spring, you'd only want to manicure, not prune, so you don't remove the flowers. If there are wispy twigs protruding from the strongly growing nodes, that's what I trim. Anything more and you've removed your flowers.
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Name: Julia
Washington State (Zone 7a)
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springcolor
Jul 10, 2013 6:22 PM CST
Here is a pruning article on hydrangea pruning from Fine Gardening.http://www.finegardening.com/how-to/articles/how-to-prune-hydrangeas.aspx Looks like this link didn't work but here is a good video.http://www.finegardening.com/how-to/videos/pruning-hydrangea.aspx Just Google how to prune hydrangea.

Also here is a glossery of term. I think you need to determine what kind of shade you have. http://www.greatplantpicks.org/resources/glossary This will give you a guide line.
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[Last edited by springcolor - Jul 10, 2013 6:30 PM (+)]
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Name: jennifer
central nj (Zone 6b)
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flowersrjen
Jul 11, 2013 9:40 PM CST
I have found it takes 3 years for the hydrangeas to get established, then they really start to put on a show, so if it's not a sun situation or wrong pruning it just might be it's putting all it's energy into growing right now
Name: Theresa Maris
Bowling Green,KY (Zone 6b)
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tgarden711
Jul 12, 2013 5:36 AM CST
I expected it would take awhile since it came in a little 4" pot but it is 2 1/2 feet now. It has been 2 years, the plant looks healthy so I will wait another year and if it doesn't bloom I will move it. Thank you.
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Jul 12, 2013 9:43 AM CST
All of the cuttings (about 8) I propagated and planted last summer in various places have bloomed although still just tiny things. When cut, they were all less than a foot with 2 pairs of leaves. If you are able to add a pic of your plant, that might give people ideas. Whenever I have a plant that should be blooming but isn't, I give it a banana peel, just under the surface at the base of the plant. Works better than any fertilizer.

This is one of the cuttings, a few weeks ago.
Thumb of 2013-07-12/purpleinopp/f06ea6
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Name: Theresa Maris
Bowling Green,KY (Zone 6b)
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tgarden711
Jul 13, 2013 8:45 AM CST
I will try the banana peel. Thanks.
Name: Clint Brown
Medina, TN (Zone 7b)
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clintbrown
Jul 13, 2013 12:31 PM CST
Don't prune it anymore at all until it blooms. You will probably get blooms next year if you don't.
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
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Cinta
Jul 15, 2013 9:21 PM CST
Clint is right. The pruning is your problem. Nikko Blue should never be pruned for at least 5 years and you get to know which limbs are really dead. In zone 6 we get a warm up and some frost which kills the buds. When I am not lazy I cover my bush and keep it covered until May when there is no threat of frost and I get a lot of flowers those years.

It took my Nikko almost 4 years to bloom. I ordered it from an online vendor and it was a little thing. If you keep pruning you will never see a bloom. It looks dead but those buds come from what looks like brown stems. I had my bush in deep shade and it bloomed every year if we did not get a late frost.

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