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Janet Macunovich

No-bloom blue hydrangeas

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Recently D.H. wrote to ask:

Is there something I can put on the ground to get my blue hydrangeas to bloom?"


Hi D.H.

We are so often asked about blue (and pink) hydrangeas that don't bloom that we've written about it many times. At least tree of those articles are already on GardenAtoZ. Check these articles (and watch here to hear from others with ideas):


Download the PDF What's Up #116 and read the page 1-3 lead article

Take a look at our article Cut Weak Wood Hard in What's Up #200*


Grow #529*

Grow #462*


Hydrangea macrophylla, the species called bigleaf or mophead-hydrangea, and H. serrata (lacecap hydrangea, a parent of many blue-and pink-blooming hybrids) are not reliable north of/colder than zone 7 in terms of bud hardiness. Zone 6 and zone 5 winters or even late spring frosts kill the tip buds on the branches and without those the plants grow lush and leafy but do not bloom or bloom very late and small on lower branches only.


Nothing you can fertilize them with will make a difference in bloom/no bloom. Covering them completely for winter and protecting them in spring are the things that might make a difference, unless you can move the plants to a known, more protected spot (usually must be 5- to 10F warmer than the rest of the yard on coldest winter days).


*Sorry in advance if at some point these hyperlinks fail; it's an unavoidable consequence with our move from GardenAtoZ.com-to-GardenAtoZ.org. If a link fails:

Cut and paste the URL to your browser bar to read the article.

Or go to GardenAtoZ.org or GardenAtoZ.org  then search the article name.




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