Gardening tips: plant a Hydrangea for summer-long colour

Beautiful colourful Hydrangea flowers in kent
Beautiful colourful Hydrangea flowers in kent

 

Plant hydrangea ‘Kardinal Violet’
 Hydrangea ‘Kardinal Violet’ is compact enough for most gardens. Photograph: Alamy

Blooming in spring and summer, the hydrangea is considered a shrub. But despite their ability to be rather large showstoppers in your yard, how to grow hydrangeas isn’t a question even the novice gardener will need to ask – these beauties all but grow themselves. Reaching up to 15 feet in height, the hydrangea grows quickly and often fills in a space in just one summer. You’ll find hydrangeas growing in hardiness Zones 3 to 7 as perennials. With flowers starting in spring and often last throughout summer into early fall, hydrangea flowers can be the foundation plant of your landscape.

Plant this Looking for a flowering shrub with zing? Try hydrangea ‘Kardinal Violet’. On acidic soil, its flowers are violet and purple; on neutral or alkaline soil, they are pink. Bred to flower all summer, at 1.5m x 1.5m it is compact enough for most gardens. It likes a moist spot in full sun or partial shade.

beautiful purple Hydrangea Sargentiana gardening in Kent

Hydrangea Aspera Sargentiana

Sun tolerance: partial sun
Bloom size: 8″ plus
Mature size (feet): 10 x 10

Hydrangea sargentiana, knows as Sargent’s hydrangea, is an upright, rounded, deciduous shrub

Best grown in rich, evenly moist, well-drained soils in part shade. Tolerates full sun only if grown with consistently moist soils. 

Add aluminum sulfate to the soil to make the flowers bluer or add lime to the soil to make the flowers pinker. Soil treatments should be commenced well in advance of flowering. Flowers bloom on old wood. Prune after flowering by cutting back the flowering stems to a pair of healthy buds. Prune out weak or winter-damaged stems in early spring.