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Hydrangeas leaves turning white

Hydrangea Runaway bride
i have recently replanted 2 small plants which were growing well with a few flowers in larger pots in a mixture of peat based potting compost and John Innes compost. I watered them well. 2 days later some leaves have turned white and fallen off, others are pale yellow and the flowers have wilted. The pots receive sun in the afternoon. Do I need a different kind of compost? The compost mixture doesn’t appear to drain very well. Maybe a more shady position? Any ideas please to revive them.
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  • craigbeckcraigbeck Posts: 8
    edited May 2019
    Hmm. sounds dire. So much for the Chelsea plant of 2018! I would do what you think and put it in a shady position the compost is probably ok.
  • Thanks I will move the pots into a much shadier spot and see what happens. They were very pretty before repotting and I do hope I can keep them alive.
  • LynLyn Posts: 23,190
    If they are small plants I would cut the flowers off for this year, they uses a lot of energy making flowers whereas you want them to make good roots first. 
    They will live in any soil full sun or shade, just make sure you water them well when you plant them out. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • They are small plants and I planted them out in large pots. They are looking worse today now in shade with more very pale areas on more leaves. I will cut the flowers off and see if they improve. Does anyone know what is causing this. Is it leaf scorch or lack of nutrients because the root system is not able to support new growth or something else? Do I need a different compost? I was advised to use John Innes number 3 but should I have used ericaceous compost?
  • LynLyn Posts: 23,190
    You don’t need to use ericaceous compost, they grow just as well in alkaline soil. 
    When did you buy the plants? Sometimes the ones that are in flower when you buy them have been kept in hot house conditions, when you put them outside it’s a shock for them. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • debs64debs64 Posts: 5,122
    Could it be vine weevil? Just a thought 
  • Thanks for your comments. I have had them about 3 weeks growing on my kitchen windowsill inside so maybe it was a shock to be outside in the sun. They were starting to flower inside and no risk of night frosts so I got on with getting them potted up outside. I don’t know about vine weevil so I’ll check this out.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,871
    My guess is sun scorch. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.





  • LynLyn Posts: 23,190
    I would say as I said above these are brought on to flower now in a hot house for the purpose of selling, they’ve never seen the great outdoors and the nights have been very cold, or is that just down here,  temps of 2c high of 5c.  last night a good one, it stayed at 6c but that’s still cold for a hot house plant. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Thanks, I’ve looked at some pictures of sun scorch and yes the leaves do look like this could be the problem. I thought this was something that happened in Arizona not North London! What next? Plants are now in shade but are they likely to survive? Any tips to give them the best possible chance?
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