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Can I make my hydrangea darker pink?

Bagpuss57Bagpuss57 South West Posts: 254
I have some pale pink hydrangeas that were originally cuttings from my late grandma's garden. I want to keep them for sentimental reasons but wondered if I could make them a darker pink by changing the soil pH? I don't know what variety the hydrangea is. I've heard that you can make pink ones go purply blue but wondered if there is a way to get a deeper more intense pink colour rather than a wishy washy pale pink.

Posts

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 26,224
    Yes - increase the alkalinity by watering with hard tap water and maybe scattering some garden lime around the roots and forking it in - the kind used to help protect brassicas from club root.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Bagpuss57Bagpuss57 South West Posts: 254
    I'll try that, thanks obelixx. 😃
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 26,224
    Me too when I find some.  We have inherited two hydrangea macrophylla in this garden and one is luscious deep pinky red and the other can't make up its mind to be blue and is a bit pink and a bit purply.  
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Bagpuss57Bagpuss57 South West Posts: 254
    I've just sourced some garden lime in Wilkinson's which is only £4 a box so I'm trying that. It says it helps with hard soil too which may help my clay soil. I have a large Wilkinson's near me but you can also buy online. 
    I like the sound of your undecided hydrangea bluey pinky purple sounds lovely,better than wishy washy pale pink!!
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 26,224
    No, it's wishy washy.  No Wilkinsons here but one of the garden centres or supply stores round here will have some.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,532
    My two hydrangeas (one that came with the house, one a gift), are a lovely deep pink and much admired by visitors.  I wondered whether it was the variety or the local soil chemistry, now I know - we're on limestone.  I've been thinking of adding some different hydrangeas in the same border, and I fancy the tricolour that has lime green tips.  Would the alkalinity detract from the colours?
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 26,224
    I think it's the macrophylas that are sensitive to alkalinity and acidity.  Being on alkaline soil never made any difference to my paniculatas which I took to growing because they are hardy enough to survive winters in my last garden and flowered on new growth.    Don't know about the oak leaved forms.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,532
    Thank you, @Obelixx.  Come the autumn I'll order one.
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 26,224
    Looks like your tricolor is a macrophyla so you won't get blue flowers.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
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