Hydrangea Shrubs: Tips for Planting & Care

Gardeners get downright passionate about hydrangea shrubs – and why wouldn’t they? With their massive, brightly-colored flowers – in shades of white, pink, blue or lavender – these flowering plants are without equal in the shrub world.

Hydrangea Shrubs: Tips for Planting & Care

Fortunately, planting and caring for hydrangea shrubs don’t require an expert green thumb or any special garden equipment or supplies. These beautiful outdoor plants are easy to cultivate, and they tolerate a range of soil conditions. In fact, most anyone can grow these healthy flowering shrubs and enjoy their fluffy, gorgeous blooms year after year.

When & Where to Plant Hydrangeas

Ideally, you should plant hydrangeas in either the spring or fall. If you plant them during the summer, these flowering shrubs need lots of extra water to establish a healthy root system.

When deciding on placement in your garden or planting beds, avoid open areas where heavy winds could cause damage. Choose spots that offer full sun in the morning hours and afternoon shade, and space the shrubs at least three feet apart.

Before planting, amend the soil with compost or other organic matter.

How to Keep Hydrangea Shrubs Healthy

For the first year or two after planting – and during drought conditions – hydrangeas need plenty of water. To keep the leaves from wilting, never let the soil get too dry.

In addition, native Utah soils need amendments to keep hydrangeas healthy. Shrubs planted in light or sandy soil need to be fertilized in spring or late winter. For best results, have a soil test done before feeding your flowering shrubs. Adding too much fertilizer may boost leaf growth while diminishing the hydrangea blooms.

When and How to Prune Hydrangea Shrubs

Pruning hydrangeas encourages healthy growth, but the job must be done at the right time. Prune flowering shrubs during the wrong season and you could accidentally lop off next year’s blooms.

Bigleaf hydrangeas, the most common varieties, need to be pruned toward the end of summer after the flowers fade. At that time, cut away any dead wood and prune one or two of the older stems back to the base.

Other hydrangea varieties should be pruned in late winter, when the plants are dormant and before any flower buds have formed. Remove only the dead branches when pruning these flowering shrubs.

Spring is a great time to plant hydrangea shrubs and Millcreek Gardens has beautiful, healthy hydrangeas in a variety of stunning colors. Browse our well-stocked plant nursery, and you’re sure to find the ideal flowering shrubs to enhance your northern Utah garden or landscape.

If you have questions about planting or caring for hydrangeas, our friendly and knowledgeable staff is always happy to share expert advice and tips to address all of your gardening concerns. To learn more, or to browse our selection of stunning, easy-to-grow hydrangea shrubs, visit our Salt Lake City garden center today.