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Pruning Hydrangea

None of my Hydrangea bloomed this year and there is a lot of conflicting information out there . The one photographed was moved from my Mum's to mine but the only things different from last year is location and no blooms oh and of course the weather . Most seem to advise pruning in late winter but some say prune now is it worth doing now or just wait and hope I get flowers next year? 

Mums remaining Hydrangea's look far less healthy but have bloomed, they were also moved but not till later .


  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 16,344
    I don’t agree with pruning now or late winter, now you won’t get any flowers next year, winter pruning, the frost will nip the buds. I prune at the end of March or even into April if it’s still cold and a chance of frost, a few times in the past I have had to prune twice, then only just the old flowers and down to a nice fat leaf bud.
    if you want to renovate a big old ugly one you can cut it right down to the ground now or in the Spring but won’t get any flowers next year. But the following year it will be magnificent,  big leaves loads of flowers. 
    That doesn’t apply to the Paniculata varieties, you prune those right down in the Spring as they flower on the new growth from the same season.
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 63,143
    I absolutely agree with @Lyn.  I only ever prune Hydrangea macrophylla types in the spring, as the leaf buds begin to swell ... removing the old flower head down to a strong bud. 
    As the shrub gets older and needs a bit of a boost I may also take out two or three of the oldest stems right at the base at the same time.
    Then I give it a feed of  rose or clematis fertiliser.  
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 32,855
    I'd agree with Lyn and Dove too.
    You may find that moving it was enough to set it back a bit anyway. The weather has also had a big effect on many plants. I wouldn't worry too much about it. 
    There was one in a garden round the corner from me that never flowered - simply because the owners pruned it every year at the wrong time. The new owners know what to do and it's flowered every year since.  :)
    I have two oak leaf hydrangeas. The one in the front garden [NW facing bed]is starting to flower, the one in the back [SW facing ] is already starting to get slight autumn colour [and had a bit of burnt foliage due to sun ] but has no flower buds as yet. Different aspect for them, which isn't normally a big issue for that type, but it's been enough to cause the slight difference. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Thanks all, @Fairygirl if yours is just starting to flower maybe there is still hope for mine. If not hopefully next year
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 32,855
    The oak leaf ones are slightly different from the other types of hydrangea, but most of the mopheads and lacecaps flower in July up here - I think. I don't grow them, so can't be absolutely sure.
    Mine usually flower from mid August,so they're not doing anything  different from most other years. They take more sun and drier soil than the other types, but it's been especially dry and sunny here this year, which is highly unusual for us, so the crispy leaves on one is because of that. They're very tough though - so it's not really a problem. 
    It's the foliage that marks them out more than anything -  they have great colour in autumn. This was taken in mid September last year   :)

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Mary370Mary370 Limerick, Ireland Posts: 1,829
    @Fairygirl are they easy to propagate?  It has a lovely unusual leaf, a friend has a newly planted one in her garden, I may ask her for a cutting.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 32,855
    I'm not sure Mary - I haven't tried. I bought them a few years ago as I only like white hydrangeas, but love the foliage [clue's in the title  ;) ] and the bonus of the colour in autumn which is very useful here. 
    I'd imagine they'd not be too difficult - I think they might layer readily as well. I might even try that  ;)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 32,855
    Just had a quick look on the RHS Mary, and it says softwood cuttings, so it might be worth a try getting some from your friend just now  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Mary370Mary370 Limerick, Ireland Posts: 1,829
    Thanks @Fairygirl but it is a new plant, I will probably wait until next year..........I wouldn't be happy taking cuttings atm as it is still quite small
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 32,855
    I might try and get some from mine Mary - if I have any success, I'll let you know, and you would be more than welcome to some if that was the case  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

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