Hydrangeas

July 9, 2014

Hydrangea is flowering plant with 70 to 75 species native to eastern Asia and the Americas. The greatest diversity in species is observed in China, Japan and Korea. Hydrangeas are unrivalled in the shrub world, they are very easy to cultivate and tolerate most soil type.

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Hydrangeas thrive in a moist but well-drained soil, in a semi-shady part of the garden. Avoid exposing them to east-facing sites where cold winds could damage young spring growth and try to avoid dry sunny post too. Hydrangea flowers are produced from early spring to late autumn where they grow flower heads at the ends of the stems. Common colour of the flower is white but in some species flowers can be red, light pink, blue, light and dark purple.

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There are two flower arrangements in hydrangeas: mophead flowers and lacecap flowers. The mophead flowers are large round flower heads looking pretty much like pom-poms or the head of a pop while the lacecap flowers have round flat flower heads.

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Hydrangeas are fascinating flowering plants in that the colour of their flowers can be changed. People who grow hydrangeas in containers have most control in changing the pH of the soil hence changing the colours. Hydrangeas also change colours on their own when they are being transplanted; it is their way of adjusting to the new environment. There are limitations however to changing the colours of hydrangeas. For instance, white hydrangeas cannot be changed to pink or blue. It is easier to change a hydrangea from pink to blue than vice versa. Changing pink to blue entails subtracting aluminium from the soil while changing blue to pink entails adding more aluminium to the soil. One has very rare control on the intensity of the color.

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