- Type: Saxifrage
- Flowering Period: June, July, August, September, October
- Height: 1-4m
- Color: White, Pink, Blue, Purple
Flowers have always been an adornment of any garden. It is on them that the gaze rests, they attract us with their beauty, skillfully lure with an exuding aroma. We admire the delicate petals and succulent foliage, inhale the smells and, of course, understand how difficult it is to grow such a miracle. Undoubtedly, one of the garden favorites is the whim of hydrangea. A bush or an island from the bushes of this plant with wonderful spherical or pyramidal inflorescences will make any shady corner of your garden attractive. We decided to tell you about its history and types, about how to plant hydrangea and care for it in this article.
A small historical background
The first in Europe appeared large-leaved hydrangea. This happened at the very end of the 18th century. It was brought by French travelers from the island of Mauritius, located in the Indian Ocean. The prince of the Roman Empire K.G. was a participant in this first round-the-world expedition for the French. Nassau Siegen. It is believed that he named the beautiful plant in honor of his beloved sister.
However, other sources claim that the bush received its name in honor of the beloved French doctor F. Commerson. There is a not so romantic version of the appearance of this name: the bush was discovered in the governor's garden. So they named it in honor of this event in Latin hortensis, which means "from the garden."
Otherwise, this moisture-loving bush is called hydrantia. In Greek, hydor means "water," and angeion means "vessel." Moreover, it was not only that the bush needed frequent watering, but also that its seed boxes looked like a vessel - a jug. But a more pleasant for hearing name gradually prevailed over Latin.
Types and varieties of hydrangea
The Hydrangeaceae family includes several dozen varieties of this plant. Until now, their exact number has not been determined, because some instances cause disagreement among experts. Most often it is a flowering shrub with attractive large leaves. But sometimes it is also called lianas, and even small trees.
As a rule, panicle or corymbose inflorescences that bloom at the ends of shoots are formed on hydrangeas. Large sterile (sterile) flowers are located along their edges, and in the center are small fertile, that is, fruit-bearing. In individual species, all flowers are fruitful: they form large and very attractive balls.
The petals of this shrub have a rather diverse color: they are white, pink, blue, red, purple and even blue. They are able to please any gourmet gardener. But the leaves are not inferior in their attractiveness. With proper care, they grow large, juicy and bright. It’s hard to refuse such beauty.
Typically, the following species are planted in open ground: paniculate, tree-like, groundcover, garden, radiant, ashy, serrate, petiolate, large-leaved and rough. Let us dwell on the varieties that are most popular in Russian gardens.
Panicled hydrangea - ice cream in greens
Well, of course, such an inflorescence is called a panicle, and hydrangea itself is called panicle. The whisk really looks like soft ice cream squeezed into a waffle cup. It has a cone-shaped appearance, consists of both large and small flowers. It has a length of 20-25 cm.
At the beginning of flowering, the petals of the plant are white in color, gradually they begin to turn pink, and before the end of the season, slightly greenish tones are added to the general gamut. Such a change of shades is characteristic of this amazing shrub. Its leaves are elliptical. From above they are covered with a velvety fluff. They are even more pubescent from below.
Paniculate flowering is distinguished by its duration. It begins with early varieties in June, and with the advent of July, this process covers all varieties. What varieties of this flower are planted in Russia?
- Grandiflora or Pee Gee. This variety can often be found in old gardens. Her tightly packed inflorescences consist exclusively of sterile flowers.
- Limelight. This shrub can reach a height of up to 1.2-1.6 meters. There is also its smaller version of Little Lime, up to 1 m high. His pyramidal greenish panicles turn a little pink before the end of the season.
- Pinky Winky. This variety has a height of 1.5-1.8 meters. It is distinguished by openwork inflorescences with large flowers, which eventually turn purple-pink.
- Phantom. This bush grows 2.5 meters in height. Due to the spreading crown, a little more space should be allocated to it. Its creamy whiskers turn pink.
- Vanilla Freyz. Its panicles are very similar to vanilla-strawberry ice cream. The bush itself reaches 2 meters in height. Variety Sunday Frez - its half-reduced copy.
- Diamond Rouge. If you have not yet met a variety with red petals, then this is it. The plant reaches 1.5-1.8 meters in height.
- Great Star. Large petals of this variety are connected in the form of a propeller and seem to hover over the total mass of small ones. Very effective two-meter bush.
- White lady. This variety is somewhat reminiscent of jasmine. On a 2-meter-tall bush, snow-white petals look like butterflies that are about to flutter.
- Weems Red. A magnificent variety whose flowers change color three times a season. In June they are white, then they turn pink and, finally, by the fall they acquire a rich burgundy red color.
It does not make sense to list all varieties of panicle hydrangea, but, believe me, it is exquisite in all its incarnations and variations. There is something to choose and something to work with pleasure.
Choosing a Tree Variety
Tree hydrangea is also able to tolerate our difficult climatic conditions. It freezes only in the most severe winters. Despite the name, it is still a shrub, and in height it grows by about 1.5 meters. Its ovoid large leaves have a notch at the base, similar to a stylized heart, and notches along the edges. The surface of the leaf is green, and its flip side is bluish.
Here are some names:
- Hayes Starburst Its inflorescences consist of large terry flowers, first greenish, and later - a bright white shade. Their diameter can reach 25 cm. Sometimes thin branches of the bush simply can not withstand such a severity.
- Inkerdiball. White blooming balls on this shrub simply amaze with their gigantic size. The plant itself rises only 1.2-1.5 meters.
- Invincible Spirit. The intense pink hue of large inflorescences, as it were, fades in the sun over time, gradually acquiring a noble pallor.
- White House. Large cream-white flowers border the scutellum, the inside of which consists of fertile flowers. The maximum height of such a bush is only 1-1.4 m.
Of course, this list does not reflect the entire wealth of choice: it only opens the veil, which hides many more mysterious beauties.
Petioles look to rise up
In this variety of hydrangeas, loose inflorescences also have the form of a shield. Large flowers are located at the edges, and small ones form the center. But the most amazing thing in this shrub is its rhizomes and suckers that grow on the shoots. With their help, he is able to climb the wall of knowledge to a height of 25 meters. Wide green leaves seem to cover the wall, forming a single panel.
Unfortunately, the petiole does not tolerate our harsh winters. If in the Baltic states it can be left on supports, then we will have to not only remove it, but also cover it. However, as an excellent groundcover, it can also be widely used.
Such a coveted and capricious large-leaf hydrangea
This plant is a frequent visitor to domestic sites, which always pleases with a variety of colors. Of various shapes, she has not only the flowers themselves, but also the inflorescences. The only drawback of this beauty is the need to shelter her in the winter. It may freeze and lock if shelter seems excessive to her.
If it freezes in autumn or early spring, and then still leaves, then flower buds may turn out to be damaged. Therefore, it is better to still grow it in the greenhouse, and only then plant it in open ground. Let autumn sit out again in the greenhouse, and for the winter she will have to move to live in the basement.
Ground Requirements and Landing Features
It is believed that the best time for planting seedlings is spring or autumn, but these bushes can be planted even in summer. To do this, it is important to purchase them in a pot or tub, so that the root system is closed. However, in order not to take risks, it is better to choose spring for planting.
It is better if in the afternoon the bush will be in the shade or partial shade. The scorching sun and drought, she tolerates very poorly. A special soil regime must be created at the landing site. Soil should give an acid reaction. To create it, peat or a special soil mixture for azaleas is placed in the planting pits. A mixture of peat and compost or leaf humus in equal parts is well suited. Compost can be exchanged for potassium sulfate and superphosphate.
We dig a hole 50 cm deep. Its length and width is at least 60 cm. The soil should be permeable and loose so that the seedling does not have difficulty breathing. To make the future bush quite lush, you should shorten the roots before planting, and cut the shoots to 3-4 buds.
The seedling is placed in the ground, then watered, and only then peat mulch is placed around it. For mulch, film and sawdust, paper and burlap, compost and needles, straw and even expanded clay are suitable. So in the upper layers of the soil to maintain the correct air regime. When planting as a hedge between seedlings, you must leave at least 2-3 meters of distance. In this case, the bushes will not strangle each other when they grow.
Necessary care and top dressing
From the way you care for your hydrangea, it will delight you from spring until late autumn.
- The soil. At 5-7 cm, the soil should be loosened periodically. Do not forget to add a new mulch.
- Watering. In the area of the root, the soil should not be dry. Watering needs only warm water, which has already settled.
- Top dressing. Twice a month, fertilize with organic or mineral fertilizers.
- Supports. Branches can break under the weight of blooming balls.
- Pruning. Old bushes should be rejuvenated. To do this, trim at the end of October. If the shoots are weak or old, they must be removed completely. The rest is cut to one or two pairs of kidneys. In spring, pruning should be done again - remove branches frozen in winter. The upper parts of last year's shoots cannot be cut.
Once again we remind you that in direct sunlight, hydrangea can survive, but it will not look good. It will lag behind in development and growth, give small and ugly inflorescences. Therefore, she needs a shadow or partial shade.
For more information about grooming, pruning and wintering, see the video:
How to propagate the plant?
There is little beauty, therefore, sooner or later, it will definitely want to be propagated. How to do it?
- Seeds Collect the seeds. In the open ground they can be planted in May or at the end of April. If everything goes well, the first flowering of the bush should be expected only after two years.
- Division. A large bush can be divided. It is better to do this in the spring, then by the fall a new bush will already get stronger.
- Cuttings. For this procedure, cuttings of the current year will be needed. After 20-25 days they are already taking root.
As you can see, for all the capriciousness of this plant, it can and should be dealt with. Having done everything right, you will enjoy the wonderful view of your garden. And you will be proud that you have achieved such beauty with your own hands.