Hydrangeas are the workhorses of any landscape. They produce copious amounts of beautiful petals to add color and life to your garden and home. Even after they have died, dried hydrangeas can add beauty year round. Don’t deny yourself the luxury of this wonderful plant by thinking they are reserved for the south. These showy plants bring a bit of panache from the summer heat until the late fall. By having some basic knowledge about landscaping with hydrangeas, you can get a little bit closer to the talk of the town garden.
Hydrangeas are pretty versatile. They can be used as a stand-alone plant, mixing in color to provide a rainbow of petals, or mixed in as a background to your other garden plants. They can easily be used in further parts of a garden to anchor backgrounds with color. They tolerate shade well, and can help bring color to the darker areas of a garden.
Hydrangeas grow relatively easily. While they enjoy the South’s heat, northerners can easily help the survive winters by giving them their preferred living conditions. Hydrangeas like rich organic soil, sometimes slightly acidic, that is well drained with no standing water. Surround the plant with peat moss to help this goal. While they are heavy drinkers and should be watered regularly, be wary not to flood them. Don’t over fertilize if you have a harsh winter, as they need time to harden at the end of the season.
While hydrangeas are relatively hardy to most conditions, they are susceptible to a few pests. Aphids, Rose Chafer, Spider Mites, and Scale are the main pest problems. These can be solved with careful monitoring, and the introduction of predators like ladybugs. Many garden shops can order ladybugs for you home garden. Leaf spot, rust and mildew often affect hydrangeas, but by keeping their planting area well drained, you can avoid these diseases.