Hydrangeas forum: Hydrangea question.

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Name: Kevin Smith
INDIANA (Zone 5b)
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kssmith
Sep 6, 2015 2:39 PM CST
This year we bought a 2 gallon potted hydrangea with white blooms that turn light green as they age. It is doing really great and we are happy with it.
Last year we bought a small hydrangea that either blooms pink or blue depending on what you add to the soil. It was really short but bloomed okay. This year it bloomed okay but remained so short that the blooms are barely out of the ground. I did not prune it except to cut off the spent blooms last year. Its in the shade all morning and gets 6 or 7 hours of afternoon sun.
Should i have fed it something in the spring or would some milorganite help it out now. I am daylily person and hydrangea are new to me. Help please.
SO MANY DAYLILYS, SO LITTLE LAND
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
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woofie
Sep 6, 2015 2:53 PM CST
I don't know anything about growing hydrangeas (although I'm thinking about giving them another try next year), but it might help someone more knowledgeable if you could include the cultivar if you know it and/or a photo or two.
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Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
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Shadegardener
Sep 6, 2015 5:35 PM CST
Hey, Kevin - not sure exactly where you are in IN but a couple of my hydrangeas were hit hard the past two winters. (Here's hoping for a mild one this year!) Some of them were killed all the way back to the ground but put up new growth from the roots. Neither of those two bloomed this year. Some varieties were affected, others weren't. I'm surprised that you got blooms so low on your shrubs. Have you fed them anything else to encourage the blooming? Are they mulched very thickly? I wouldn't fertilize this time of year as they're getting ready to go dormant. If you have compost, you could put about an inch-thick layer around them now and let them go for the year.
Name: Bob
Vernon N.J. (Zone 6a)
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NJBob
Sep 6, 2015 9:36 PM CST
Some hydrangea only flower on old wood and if we have a tough Winter like the last 2 , no flowers or almost nothing is not unusual in our zones.
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
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dyzzypyxxy
Sep 6, 2015 9:37 PM CST
Where I grew up in the Pac. Northwest the hydrangeas really liked to be in shade for most of the day, and summers there are most likely cooler than where you are. The one that gets 6 or 7 hours of sun might do better with more shade. Also morning sun is more gentle than afternoon sun, as the temperature is generally cooler in the mornings. So if you have a location with either of those two conditions available, a move might help. Or plant a small tree to shade them in the afternoon?

They also like lots of moisture, and soil high in organic material so adding top dressing of compost as Cindy suggests would be good, and you should do it every spring as well as fall. Also I would definitely fertilize them with a timed release pelleted fert in the spring as soon as you see the leaves starting to open out. Big, established hydrangeas might do ok without a lot of fert, but small ones just trying to get going need all the help they can get.
Elaine

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[Last edited by dyzzypyxxy - Sep 7, 2015 3:59 PM (+)]
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Name: Kevin Smith
INDIANA (Zone 5b)
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kssmith
Sep 7, 2015 3:41 PM CST
Thanks all for advice. Yes last 2 winters were bad and i have replaced some rose bushes. I had plenty of blooms but hardly any growth for height. Thus the blooms are almost on the ground. I guess next spring i will use the fert.
SO MANY DAYLILYS, SO LITTLE LAND
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
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sooby
Sep 7, 2015 4:01 PM CST
By any chance does the height of the blooms coincide with the general depth of snow last winter?
Name: Kevin Smith
INDIANA (Zone 5b)
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kssmith
Sep 7, 2015 5:32 PM CST
No the snow was much higher.
SO MANY DAYLILYS, SO LITTLE LAND
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
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sooby
Sep 7, 2015 6:04 PM CST
Just that it crossed my mind that forsythia, for example, will only flower low down on the plant where it would have been covered by snow in areas where it isn't totally bloom hardy. We tried the Endless Summer hydrangea, one that does the blue or pink thing and is supposed to be hardier than others with that coloration, but it struggled through the first winter and only grew short branches the next year, then it croaked altogether the following winter. The white flowered ones like 'Annabelle' and PeeGee types are perfectly hardy here, however.
Name: Kevin Smith
INDIANA (Zone 5b)
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kssmith
Sep 8, 2015 5:44 PM CST
Yes Sue it sounds like what we got. The larger one came without tags but it blooming its heart out and is more bushy than when we bought it 1 month ago. Now i need a foundation shrub that blooms after lilacs but before hydrangea.
SO MANY DAYLILYS, SO LITTLE LAND

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