If you plan on planting a hydrangea bush, you should know how to properly prune these delightful plants. Hydrangea bushes are incredibly beautiful, and you can expect them to bloom their flower bunches in shades of purple, pink and even blue during growing season. With their amazing flowers and rich green leaves, they are wonderful plants to use for landscaping.
Due to the fact that there are many different varieties of hydrangea bushes, there are also different criteria for how and when to prune them. In general, hydrangeas don't require any inordinate amount of pruning, the exception being when they have become overgrown and lost their ideal shape. Any time this is the case with your hydrangeas, no matter what their variety, you can easily remove old blooms. This process is also known as deadheading. However, keep in mind that you must limit your cuts to the first group of leaves and up to the most recent healthy buds. The best time to do this is in the late summer, after the blooms have begun to fade on your hydrangea bushes.
As a general rule that applies to all types of bushes, shrubs and trees, you should also always prune away any damaged, dead or diseased parts you spot on the plant. This will improve the overall health of your hydrangeas as well as promote the growth of new, healthy buds for the next growing season. Make sure to use a good set of sharp pruning shears to make your cuts. Between usage, you must adequately clean your shears with alcohol or bleach. This will keep the tool properly sanitized and will prevent the spread of any disease if your plants happen to become affected by a fungus or other ailment.
If you grow big leaf hydrangeas, limit your pruning to late summer, after blooming stops. It is possible to make your cuts in the spring or fall as long as you avoid cutting any stems that contain new buds.
The oakleaf hydrangea should be pruned in the early spring season, which is a time when they are not in bloom. Their season starts in the fall, so you will not be harming the bush when pruning during the spring.
Pee gee hydrangeas, which are also known as panicles, can be pruned during late winter or early spring, prior to their blooming, which takes place in the summer. Fall is also an acceptable time to prune these bushes. Since they can grow quite high, the pee gee can also be trained to grow as a tree. Shaping this type of hydrangea is particularly important for aesthetic purposes.
The Annabelle hydrangea bush typically blooms in the spring, so summer is the ideal time to do your pruning on it. Some home gardeners prune them to the ground during the winter or in early spring, prior to the blooming period.
Finally, the climbing hydrangea does not usually need any pruning. You can expect to see new flowers blooming from shoots at the plant's sides, and these can be pruned during the fall, after blooming season ends. Make sure to cut back to the last healthy bud.