Ask a Question forum: One of three hydrangeas not blooming

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zone 5 - northern Illinois
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ninabee
Jul 11, 2017 12:08 PM CST
As you see in the picture the hydrangea in front has no signs of blooming and the two behind it are starting to bloom a little. I feed them all the same and all three get the same amount of sun. What would cause one of three not to bloom?
Thumb of 2017-07-11/ninabee/74cf88

Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
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dyzzypyxxy
Jul 11, 2017 2:21 PM CST
The most common thing that causes hydrangeas not to bloom is pruning them at the wrong time. Did you by any chance trim that bush early in the spring, or a little more than the others? Could it have been broken off, or maybe crushed by snow in the winter?

A lot of hydrangeas bloom on last summer's new growth (what grew after the flowers were done last year). If you prune that new growth back, or it gets broken off you will often not get any flowers.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
zone 5 - northern Illinois
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ninabee
Jul 12, 2017 9:43 AM CST
Haven't pruned them since spring 2016. I took way too much off last spring and didn't get any blooms, so I decided to skip pruning this year.
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Jul 12, 2017 9:52 AM CST
nina - it does depend on if you have hydrangeas that bloom on old wood or that bloom on new wood. Would you happen to know the variety? I've just about given up on H. macrophylla here. Even 'Endless Summer' doesn't do well for me.
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can't eat money. Cree proverb
zone 5 - northern Illinois
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ninabee
Jul 31, 2017 6:58 AM CST
Not sure what kind they are. But I've attached an updated picture showing how well the other 2 are doing. Again, I have not treated the non-bloomer any differently than the 2 that are blooming quite nicely.
Thumb of 2017-07-31/ninabee/2b9a3d

Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
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sooby
Jul 31, 2017 7:47 AM CST
Are they all three the same kind?
zone 5 - northern Illinois
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ninabee
Jul 31, 2017 8:15 AM CST
Yep, they are all the same. That's why I'm so baffled.
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
Region: Canadian Keeps Horses Dog Lover Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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sooby
Jul 31, 2017 8:30 AM CST
Do you have deer there? They like hydrangeas. Is there any evidence that the ends of the shoots have been cut/bitten off at some time since last spring? Otherwise my suggestion would be don't prune any of them and see what happens next year. If you pruned them in spring 2016 and had no flowers last year, it would seem they are a kind that flowers only on old wood from the previous year. That means you have to be very careful about the timing for pruning (assuming there is any need to prune, other than removal of obviously dead branches) or you will cut off the next year's flowers.
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Jul 31, 2017 11:54 AM CST
Or there's just enough difference in exposure to sun or water? Is the non-blooming one closer to a tree that would dominate in ground water consumption? Do the two blooming shrubs get more moisture from the street - ie snow or rain in the gutters? The ground does look dry other than where supplemental watering was done but the plant doesn't seem to suffer from that.
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can't eat money. Cree proverb
zone 5 - northern Illinois
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ninabee
Aug 2, 2017 10:31 AM CST
There is a large tree near the bush, but it doesn't seem to be affecting the other plants/flowers around it (I have all kinds of things growing around it). And yes, the leaves are healthy so the plant itself isn't lacking anything.
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Aug 2, 2017 10:42 AM CST
Is the soil consistent throughout the bed? i.e. no spots with a different soil type or pH? No winter salt run-off from a driveway? When it rains, does the whole bed get consistently wet? (I have oak tree canopy and unless I have a heavy rain, it doesn't get to the ground underneath.) Gosh - otherwise, it might just be one of those things and it will catch up next year with blooms.
Only when the last tree has died and the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught will we realize that we can't eat money. Cree proverb

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