Hydrangea is a genus of plants that belongs to the Hortensian family. In nature, a large number of these flowers grow in South and North America, South and East Asia. Meanwhile, the beauty and unpretentiousness of hydrangeas became the reason for their popularity among gardeners. Now such flowers can be found in gardens and private homes around the world.
Types of Hydrangeas
There are many varieties of hydrangeas, which differ in size, appearance of leaves and flowers, and features of care. Among them are the following types:
- oak leaf;
- mixed hair;
In nature, there are dozens of types of hydrangeas
Despite the species diversity, only the first three varieties became widespread in Russia. At the same time, there will be no lack of choice of flowers for the garden, as breeders have bred dozens of varieties of hydrangea.
Important! Some representatives of this genus have so many similar characteristics that it is extremely difficult for a beginner to determine which variety a flower belongs to.
Meanwhile, hydrangea is large-leafed, panicled hydrangea and tree-like differences are, and quite significant. This will be especially important in the organization of plant care work.
What is panicle hydrangea
Panicled hydrangea is represented by a shrub, which most often reaches a height of 2 m, however, some representatives of this genus can grow up to 10 m. The bush is formed by several trunks that are capable of rapid woodiness. Due to this feature, the plant easily tolerates winter frosts.
The leaves of such shrubs are oval, slightly elongated and often have villi. The dimensions of the sheet plate can vary depending on the variety and often reach 8-10 cm.
In panicled hydrangea inflorescences are located on the tops of new shoots. In shape, they resemble a pyramid with a wide base and a sharp top. Such panicles consist of non-fertile and fertile flowers.
Note! The inflorescences of most panicled varieties are initially white or pale in color, and become brighter over time.
The most popular varieties from this category are Diamond Rouge, Phantom, Pinky Winky, Grandiflora, Vanilla Freyz.
Panicle hydrangea has cone-shaped inflorescences
What is tree hydrangea
Treelike hydrangea is a deciduous shrub native to North America. Under natural conditions, the plant can reach a height of more than 3 m, however, instances higher than 1.5 m are rarely found in gardens.
On tubular shoots there are leaves of saturated green color. On the back, the shade is less intense, often bluish. The sheet plate is elliptical in shape with serrated edges. In most representatives of shrubs of this species, the leaves are relatively large (up to 10 cm in length) without pubescence.
Inflorescences that appear on annual shoots are most often flat or presented in the shape of a ball. They consist of small flowers of white, pink or purple. With good care, dozens of inflorescences appear on the bush, which completely cover the plant.
Note! From this subspecies it is worth paying special attention to such representatives as White Anna, Pink Picnic, Invisible Spirit.
Spherical inflorescences of tree hydrangea
What is large-leaved hydrangea (or garden)
This type of hydrangea is a shrub resembling a ball in shape. The natural range of its distribution is Japan. In the wild, a bush can grow up to 3 m in height. The cold climate of Russia does not allow the plant to reach such sizes, therefore large-leaved hydrangeas 0.5-1 m in size are most often present in gardens.
On the bare upright stems of the plant are wide oval leaves with a pointed end. In summer, they are painted in a bright green hue, but by autumn they acquire a red tint.
The flowers of this shrub are collected in large rounded inflorescences. Depending on the variety and type of soil, the petals can be white, purple, pink, red or blue.
Note! In Russia, the most popular varieties are Red Sensation, Mini Penny, Expression, Romance.
In garden hydrangeas, inflorescences are rounded colored
How to distinguish types and varieties of hydrangea
Hydrangea has many types and varieties, which for some signs can be completely identical. For this reason, it is often difficult to determine which species a plant belongs to.
Important! To identify the belonging of a shrub to a particular variety, you need to study the bush during the flowering period.
This is because it is important to take into account several features (the shape and shade of the inflorescence, the size of the flowers, the shape and size of the leaves, the level of lignification of the branches).
Panicle or tree hydrangea - which is better
Choosing the right variety for planting on the house plot, many gardeners are wondering which variety of ornamental shrub is best. It is impossible to unequivocally answer this question. First you need to study the difference between panicle hydrangea and tree hydrangea. Given these characteristics, the choice will be easy.
- The structure of the plant. Treelike hydrangea is a typical shrub, while panicled variety in shape may more closely resemble a small tree (both multi-stemmed and single-stemmed). The shape of the plant (its crown) depends on this feature.
- Frost resistance. Panicled varieties may differ in that new shoots quickly become covered with bark. This makes them more resistant to low temperatures. In other words, such shrubs can easily survive the winter, even in regions with a cold climate. In the tree-like type of such plants, new branches do not have time to grow stronger during the summer season, so in the winter, in the absence of insulation, they completely freeze.
- Appearance. In addition to the features of the structure and care, one should also take into account differences in the appearance of representatives of this family. In panicled varieties, inflorescences are large cone-shaped, and in tree-shaped inflorescences, spherical. In landscape design, these plants will look different.
The benefits of growing paniculata hydrangea
Many people opt for panicled subspecies, due to several advantages.
- Such a plant does not tolerate direct sunlight, so you need to choose a slightly shaded bed for it. However, the complete absence of the sun affects the condition of the shrub badly - it begins to grow more slowly, and the inflorescences become smaller.
- Undemanding care. To hydrangea bloomed regularly, it is enough to water the bushes 1-2 times a week, fertilize 3-4 times during the summer and periodically loosen the soil.
- A wide variety of varieties. In the list of representatives of this species are several dozen subspecies.
- A long flowering period, which lasts from June to the coldest. Throughout the summer, the bush acts as a decoration of the garden.
- It tolerates frosts and does not require additional insulation.
Large-leaved and treelike hydrangea: differences
After describing the main species of this plant, one cannot ignore the question of how the tree-like hydrangea differs from the large-leaved one.
Note! At first glance, the varieties of these shrubs may seem completely similar, but with a more detailed study, a number of features are noticeable.
- The inflorescences of the tree-like shrub have white, milky or pinkish hues. Representatives of the garden type can have both white and colored petals (red, purple, pink, purple).
- Varieties of hydrangea trees can winter without warming in Central Russia and the Urals. For broadleaf varieties, such a climate in the winter will be disastrous, so they need autumn preparation and additional warming.
- When forming a crown, it is necessary to know the growth characteristics of different types of hydrangea. In tree-like inflorescences are formed on shoots formed in the new year (they develop from lateral buds). Garden subspecies of inflorescence are formed on those shoots that continue to grow from the upper buds of last year's branches. Thus, frozen or trimmed tops this year will not give flowers.
The above characteristics make it clear that in hydrangea large-leaved and tree-like differences are not only in appearance, but also in the features of care.
Hydrangeas of different types in the landscape design of the site
As for the external characteristics of the shrub, it is not possible to choose the best species and variety. Each gardener will be able to distinguish and highlight the variety, taking into account their own preferences.
Note! Landscape designers can not take into account the difference and use all three of the above types of hydrangeas with equal success.
Any of the presented options with proper care is characterized by abundant flowering and a lot of greenery. Thanks to this feature, the bush becomes a real decoration of any territory.
All hydrangea go well with most species of shrubs and trees, including fruit, evergreen and coniferous. Varieties effectively complemented by cut lawns and stunted flowering plants. Using hydrangea, you can draw alpine slides and artificial ponds located on the site. And the result will look amazing.