Did your hydrangea bloom this year?

If so, then lucky you!

Several people have had trouble with their hydrangea bushes not blooming this summer.

One common reason people have trouble with their hydrangeas is that they are being pruned at the wrong time of year.

There are four main types of hydrangeas: mophead, oakleaf, paniculata and snowball. They each have different requirements.

Mopheads are easy to identify as they bloom pink, blue or purple. Oakleaf hydrangeas are also easy because they have a distinctive oak-like leaf and pointed, rather than rounded blooms. They always bloom white.

These first two types of hydrangeas are pruned the same way. They bloom on last year’s wood, which means that the flower buds are formed in August to bloom the next summer, usually June and July. So, pruning in the fall, early spring or late summer can take off flower buds.

The best time to prune this type of hydrangea is before August just as flowers are fading in mid to late July.

The paniculata is the largest of the hydrangeas and is often pruned to grow as a small tree. The blooms are creamy white and fade to a greenish brown. This type is also called Pee Gee. The snowball flowers in the spring and starts out as a green flower and gradually turns into a white bloom.

Both of these can be pruned in the fall, winter or spring because they flower on the new stems. The only time they should not be pruned is in the summer, just before they bloom.

One other reason flowers may not bloom would be if we have extremely cold winter weather. The flower buds may freeze. Mopheads and oakleafs are especially prone to this problem. The plant will survive but not the flower buds.

For more information, check out: https://extension.unh.edu/resource/pruning-hydrangeas-fact-sheet

Educational programs of Kentucky Cooperative Extension serve all people regardless of economic or social status and will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, marital status, genetic information, age, veteran status, or physical or mental disability.

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