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Pruning overgrown hydrangeas

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Thegrova  Send Thegrova a private message!


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Posted on Saturday, September 30, 2006 - 07:27 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Howdy all. I have a couple of particularly over grown hydrangeas which are around 7ft tall. They have previously been deadheaded in winter but I 'missed that task' during the winter - it is now spring in New Zealand, and the new growth is well underway. I was wondering if it is too late to prune, if I should just give them a light trim or if they should be pruned back quite hard because they are getting a bit big. Any advise is welcome!

www.homeinagrove.com

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Thegrova - Bay of Plenty, Zone "?"
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Bluesibe  Send Bluesibe a private message!


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Posted on Monday, October 02, 2006 - 11:48 am EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

I had this problem for the past two seasons. The hydrangeas had grown both big and wide and I had trouble getting by to water the bed. I did take out some lower branches earlier in the season. After they finished blooming, I totally deadheaded and cleaned out more growth. Normally I'd wait until spring so that the birds have something to nibble on through winter. I may lose some blooms, but it had to be done.

So what I'm trying to suggest is, clean some out now and do the heavier pruning at the end of the season.

Carol

Bluesibe - Berkeley Area, California, Zone "9a"
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Thegrova  Send Thegrova a private message!


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Posted on Tuesday, October 03, 2006 - 03:46 am EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Thanks for that Bluesibe. After posting and doing some online research (I could not find anything in my books) I figured I had no choice but to 'have a little snip'. There are two bushes side by side. I took the taller one down to about half and too the tops off the other. I understand that they flower on old wood so did not take it all off. Hopefully there will be some flowers to take pictures of later in the season!

Thegrova - New Zealand, Zone "?"
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Blumz  Send Blumz a private message!




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Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 02:57 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

As a new poster here on Garden Buddies, I'm having fun scanning through to see what you all have been talking about over the past few months.

Hydrangeas are one of the things that I simply adore in my garden. I have several of them, in different varieties. I have a hydrangea pruning story that you may find interesting.

In spring of 2005 one of mine had grown taller than it needed to be, then we were hit with several heavy, heavy spring rains. The branches were so weighted down by the huge blooms that the shrub was lying over and just looked so pitiful. I was afraid that they would break, and knowing that the pruning needed to be done before August (in my zone), I decided that I had to be merciless and cut it back, even though it was still in bloom.

I didn't get a photo of it when it was all drooped over, but here is what it looked like a couple weeks before.

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Look at the sad photo the day I cut it back.

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The good thing is that I had lots of gorgeous bouquets. The following season - 2006 - it rebounded like nothing had ever happened.

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This past season, I did some cutting back on the hydrangeas that you see on the right side of the photo. I'm anxious to see if they respond as well as the other one.

Have any of you planted the Endless Summer hydrangea? I have and have been amazed at it's performance.

Blumz - Alabama, Zone "8a"
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Missgarden  Send Missgarden a private message!




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Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 10:40 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Be still my heart... Gail your hydrangeas are totally out of this world

Missgarden - Ontario, Zone "5b"
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Blumz  Send Blumz a private message!




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Posted on Friday, January 12, 2007 - 11:09 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Thank you, Missgarden. When I first started growing hydrangeas, I knew absolutely nothing about them -- not that I know a lot about them now! I learned from making a mistake or two. A great site for people interested in hydrangeas is:

www.hydrangeashydrangeas.com

Mine are already beginning to break dormancy with all the warm weather we are having now. I'll just have to wait and see what happens to them this season.

Blumz - Alabama, Zone "8a"
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Periwinkle  Send Periwinkle a private message!




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Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 04:27 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Photos like yours are inspiring to those of us who can't grow many varieties here in the frozen Tundra!
Absolutely gorgeous and inspiring to me who is a little passive with the pruning shears.

Denise--Northern Wisconsin, Z3b Click to hear a voice greeting from Periwinkle
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Blumz  Send Blumz a private message!




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Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 04:50 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Thank you, Periwinkle. One of the things I love about my hydrangeas, especially the ones I have in my back yard, is the fact that almost every photo I take of the garden, no matter which plant I am photographing, most of the time the lovely blue blooms of my hydrangeas are visible somewhere in the photo. My soil is naturally acid, so I don't have to do anything to get the deep blue color. I do give them a shot of Miracle Gro for acid-loving plants in fall and in spring - ONLY they didn't get it this last fall. Hope I have time to give it to them this spring.

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This Endless Summer (which blooms on the old and the new wood) had been in the ground about 18 months when this photo was made on June 1 this past season. When it went in the ground, it was barely 1 foot tall. I don't know why they are so happy here with me, because I really am not diligent about soil amendments. I pretty much go on the premise that if plants are going to perform well for me, they'll have to do it in the soil I have. As I get older I'm finding that I have become a lazy gardener.

Blumz - Alabama, Zone "8a"
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Suzyqt1968  Send Suzyqt1968 a private message!




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Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 06:52 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Gail your hydrangeas are gorgeous! I also snuck a peak at your other albums and your garden is absolutely beautiful. Love all of the "garden critters" and I also really like the "window". We have a very active Garden Gallery, especially in the summer and I'm looking forward to seeing you post some of your photos!!! Welcome to Gardenbuddies!

Tim welcome to you as well! Hope you got some good info about hydrangeas. I know I did.

Suzyqt1968 - Washington, Zone "7-8"
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Blumz  Send Blumz a private message!




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Posted on Saturday, January 13, 2007 - 07:31 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Thank you Suzyqt -- I haven't done any organizational work in that album in months. It really needs updating, but I guess it gives a pretty good idea of my digs!

I'm looking forward to getting to know all of you and seeing everyone's bloomers!
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Blumz - Alabama, Zone "8a"
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Gardenlady  Send Gardenlady a private message!




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Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 02:29 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

I certainly have to concur with the others, Blumz, your Hydrangeas are "to die for". You have inspired me to give "Endless Summer" a try. I have a few other varieties, such as Pee Wee, Annabelle, and Lacecap, but your blue blooms are spectacular! Thanks for sharing.

Donna (Gardenlady)

P.S. Love your siggie! Ü
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Gardenlady - British Columbia, Zone "5b"
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Derek  Send Derek a private message!




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Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 02:50 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Such much for the old expression of green with envy....envy in blue is called for here.
What a beautiful success you have had with your Endless Summer. I was tempted to grab one at the nursery last year but passed on it. After seeing your pictures, I think I will give it a try this summer. And I can only hope my summer turns out to be as endless as yours

Derek Quebec Canada Zone 3b
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Susanq  Send Susanq a private message!




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Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 04:09 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Gail, if I could get hydrangeas to grow like that here I would be in heaven :)
I did buy several Endless Summer two years ago and managed to keep them alive but they don't bloom like that for me! I do have them planted near some large pine trees so perhaps they don't get enough moisture. I thought the added acidity would make them blue - but alas:

SusanQ - Zone 4b-5b Wisconsin
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Sunnyday2day  Send Sunnyday2day a private message!




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Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 07:56 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

I just planted some Endless Summer last season. I am very encouraged by your pics, Gail! There are some lovers of blue here and I'm one of them! Nice to meet you, btw!

Sunnyday2day - Tanya-Michigan, Zone "5"
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Blumz  Send Blumz a private message!




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Posted on Sunday, January 14, 2007 - 09:33 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Thank you all. I have to stress that I really don't do much except give them a shot of fertilizer and just watch them do their thing. One item of interest. The hydrangeas in the following photo were grown from the small "florist pots". Our church sometimes uses them to decorate the sanctuary on Mother's Day. Many people believe that these will not grow in normal garden conditions because they have been forced in a hot house and don't have good root systems. However, when I planted these, I removed the beautiful heavy blooms so the plants could put their energy into growing their root system. It took them 2 seasons to produce any blooms, but after that they have performed as well, or better, than the ones I purchased at the garden center. I have discovered also that, though we often think of hydrangeas as 'shade' plants, they do need sun to bloom. If they don't get some good sunlight at some point during the day, there won't be as many blooms. I have some in a situation like this and they never perform as well.

The photo I posted originally on this thread (the one I pruned) gets more sun now than it should, as we lost a tree that was giving it some shade in the hot afternoon. It's basically in full sun from about 11:30 on. It still blooms extremely well, but the blooms get very stressed. I have thought about moving it, but I hate to put it through a move, and really don't have another place to put it. I have simply run out of garden space. As a matter of fact, I have a small Endless Summer still in the pot that I have grown from a cutting off my original plant, and can't find anywhere to put it.

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Blumz - Alabama, Zone "8a"
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Gardenlady  Send Gardenlady a private message!




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Posted on Monday, January 15, 2007 - 12:09 am EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Gorgeous!

Gardenlady - British Columbia, Zone "5b"

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