Which Hydrangeas Grow Best In Pots

If you choose the proper variety, hydrangeas may make wonderful container plants.

  • This cultivar of Hydrangea paniculata is hardy in zones 3–8. It blooms from mid-summer to the end of the season. Its blossoms naturally change color as they wilt, going from bright green to pink and ultimately brown.
  • Zones 5–10 are suitable for the hardiness of Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Mini Penny’, depending on the soil’s pH. From spring to fall, it produces pink blooms in alkaline soil and blue flowers in acidic soil.
  • Hydrangea paniculata ‘Little Quick Fire’: This deciduous shrub blooms during the warmer months with white flowers that subsequently become deep pink. It is hardy in zones 3–8.
  • This bigleaf cultivar of Hydrangea macrophylla is hardy in zones 6–8. It has pink-colored, bicolor flowers with a white lining around the petal edges.

Do hydrangeas thrive in containers?

Do hydrangeas thrive in containers? Given that potted hydrangeas received as gifts rarely survive longer than a few weeks, it’s a reasonable question. The good news is that they can, given the proper treatment. Growing hydrangeas in pots is a great idea because they can grow to be fairly large and have beautiful blossoms all summer long. Learn more about container-grown hydrangea plants and how to take care of hydrangea in pots by reading on.

Are hydrangeas better in the ground or in pots?

Maintaining hydrangeas in pots is easy, and they provide a beautiful addition to a deck or patio’s color and structure. Additionally, they go well with modern gardens as well as country gardens.

You already know that hydrangeas want moist, organically rich soil that doesn’t dry out over the summer if you’ve read up on how to cultivate them. They thrive best when planted directly into the ground because containers have a tendency to dry out much more quickly.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t use these blooms to make a lovely container arrangement. Simply make sure to take good care of them, choose your compost wisely, and plant them where they will thrive. Additionally, some kinds are better suited to these circumstances. Everything you need to know about taking care of hydrangeas in pots is included in this guide.

Can hydrangeas in containers endure the winter?

Hydrangeas in potsWinter Care Bring potted plants indoors before the first frost for the greatest hydrangea winter protection. They can stay outside and be protected by covering the entire pot and plant if they are too heavy to transport.

How are hydrangeas kept alive in pots?

If you’ve ever received a hydrangea in a foil-wrapped pot, you likely loved it for a few of weeks before seeing it sadly wilt. You might conclude from it that hydrangeas are poor container plants.

Most hydrangeas that are given in pots as gifts do poorly because they are kept indoors for too long. Others perish because they were grown in a greenhouse and are not cold hardy in your region of the country, even if they are planted outside.

However, hydrangeas can make wonderful potted plants if you choose wisely. What you should know is as follows.

Potted Hydrangea

You can utilize hydrangeas in containers in your garden on stands, decks, or patios. This plant looks classy perched atop an antique column.

  • Choose a location for the hydrangeas first. You may move them around, which is one of the benefits of growing them in pots. This also makes it simpler to provide hydrangeas with the ideal growing circumstances because many of them like morning sun and afternoon shade. Additionally, you can arrange them to beautify a patio or other area for a celebration or special event.
  • If your pots won’t stay in the same spot all the time, search for containers with wheels on the bottom or think about durable, rolling plant stands. Don’t forget that after adding dirt and plants, containers can become rather heavy, and soaking them can make them even heavier.
  • For your hydrangea, pick a large container with a diameter of at least 18 to 20 inches. The plant commonly wilts in small pots like the one your gift hydrangea arrived in since they typically dry out too quickly. Drill drainage holes into the bottom of your container if there aren’t any already. Rotting can result from water that accumulates around the roots.
  • Next, pick a variety that is advised for your area. (This is a general guideline for growing any plant well.) To choose the best types for your yard, read plant tags or conduct online study. Some hydrangea varieties can grow in USDA zones 3 and 9, while the majority are hardy in zones 4 to 8.
  • Although using miniature hydrangeas in pots isn’t required, you might wish to if you have a small yard. Not only do hydrangeas grow tall, but they also become bushy. If not, prepare to prune your plants as they develop. Be careful when conducting your research; see if your variety blooms on new or old wood. You’ll lose the flowers for the following year if you prune at the incorrect time of year.
  • Use high-quality potting soil that contains organic materials rather than regular garden soil. If you want the hydrangea to continue growing, don’t plant it higher or deeper than it was in the pot it came in. Make sure there is space below the pot’s rim so you can water.
  • To get rid of air pockets, gently compact the dirt close to the roots.
  • Water your hydrangea well whenever the top inch or so of the potting soil feels dry. But being underwater is preferable to being overwatered. When they are thirsty, hydrangeas may wilt to let you know. However, this can stress them out, so check them every other day or so. You’ll eventually get a sense for how frequently to water. In times of drought or extreme heat, you might need to increase your watering.
  • Although hydrangeas don’t require a lot of fertilizer, you can feed your plants once or twice a year with a commercially available composted manure, a 10-10-10 granular fertilizer, or a slow-release balanced fertilizer. If you reside in a warm environment, wait until after July or August to fertilize. Gardeners in the north can get away with applying fertilizer just once, in June or July. Feeding hydrangeas later, when they should be starting to go dormant for the winter, promotes fragile, fresh growth.
  • If your plant already appears to be ill or unhealthy, don’t fertilize it—you’ll just increase its stress. Try to solve the issue instead.

Can I put my hydrangea plant in a pot outside?

Mophead hydrangeas can be cultivated outside wherever the wintertime temperature stays above -15oC because they are hardy (5oF). However, as they were grown in greenhouses and given fertilizer to induce early flowering, potted hydrangeas sold as houseplants may require some time to acclimate to life outside before being put out. Place them outside in their pots during the day and bring them inside at night to harden them off for one to two weeks before to planting. Hydrangeas that have been grown for outdoor planting can be planted immediately. Mid- to late April, when the soil has had time to warm up, is the ideal time to plant mophead hydrangeas outdoors.

The optimal conditions for hydrangeas are shade from the sweltering afternoon sun and moist, well-drained soil. They are therefore excellent alternatives for shady gardens, and in mid- and late-summer, their dramatic spherical flowerheads are absolutely gorgeous. Regularly water hydrangeas, especially during dry spells, and in the spring or fall, mulch with compost or other organic material.

Because of the soil’s pH (acidity or alkalinity), pink and blue mophead hydrangea blossoms have the unusual ability to change color. The blossoms will be a deeper shade of blue the more acidic the environment is. Flowers turn a gorgeous pink on alkaline soil. The color of white mophead hydrangeas doesn’t alter.

Why is the hydrangea in my container dying?

A hydrangea’s roots can be burned if too much fertilizer is used, which will likely result in the plant dying, turning brown, and drooping.

As such, hydrangeas are not heavy feeders and do not require annual feeding in the same manner as roses do, and doing so can actually be detrimental.

Hydrangeas frequently develop and flower to their full potential if they are planted in healthy soil or the soil has been modified with compost prior to planting.

The hydrangea should flourish if a 1-inch-thick layer of mulch is applied around it to assist retain moisture and supply nutrients to the soil (compost and leaf mould are ideal options).

Only in the following circumstances should fertilizer be used:

  • Planting the hydrangea in sandy soil (which is nutrient poor).
  • The hydrangea is in a pot or other container where the roots have used up all the nutrients in the soil.

In these two situations, it is recommended to use an all-purpose fertilizer with equal parts nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (NPK) that is applied once in the spring and is generally well-balanced.

The roots of your hydrangea can be burned by well-rotted manure, especially if it is added to the soil after planting. However, if the manure is made from poultry manure, it may contain a lot of nitrogen.

To prevent issues, I advise putting compost to the soil as a soil amendment (fresh manure is particularly harmful, always allow it to rot for a year or so before using manure on your garden).

If your hydrangea is exhibiting indications of stress as a result of being recently planted in soil that has been altered with manure, move it to a location with soil and compost, and it should recover.

Reduce the amount of fertilizer used and remove any discolored leaves or blossoms. To assist the hydrangea recover, thoroughly water it in an effort to dilute the soil’s water-soluble nitrogen.

Key Takeaways:

  • Most frequently, hydrangea deaths are caused by the soil’s lack of moisture. Because they need their soil to be continually moist, hydrangeas will droop or even die in a dry environment.
  • Drought, transplant shock, frost damage, and too much sun can all cause hydrangeas to perish.
  • If the pot base doesn’t have drainage holes, potted hydrangeas may succumb to root rot. Small containers may dry out too rapidly and limit root expansion.
  • Water hydrangeas liberally, cover them with compost mulch, and keep them out of the sun and wind to help them recover. To encourage healthy growth, remove any growth that has been sunburned or damaged by frost.

When do hydrangeas bloom?

The type, cultivar, planting zone, and hydrangea blooming season all affect when they bloom. The majority of hydrangeas with new growth form buds in the early summer in preparation for blooming the next spring, summer, and early fall. Hydrangeas may stop flowering in the heat of the summer in hot locations, but they will blossom again in the fall.

How do you cut back hydrangeas?

Hydrangea plants don’t require pruning if they are allowed plenty of room to develop in the garden. Only the periodic clearance of dead wood is necessary.

Do you need to deadhead hydrangeas?

Your hydrangeas will continue to bloom into the fall if you deadhead them. Hydrangeas make wonderful cut flowers, so there’s no need to wait until the flower wilts. Leave the early fall blossoms alone so they can fade naturally. In the days leading up to your freeze date, you don’t want to promote new growth.

How do you control hydrangea color?

The distinction of hydrangeas is that you can modify their color. But keep in mind that not all hydrangea varieties can change their color. H. macrophylla, a species of bigleaf hydrangea, responds to changes in soil pH. Hydrangeas can absorb aluminum thanks to a low soil pH, which gives the blossoms a lovely blue hue. Reduce the pH of your soil by mixing in sulfur or peat moss to enhance the number of blue hydrangea flowers. Throughout the growth season, you can keep amending your soil with extra aluminum sulfate. When you add ground limestone to boost the pH, pink and red blooms shine.

You may precisely modify your hydrangea color using a soil pH test. To avoid the plant from being harmed, keep the pH level below 7.5. In the fall, all hydrangeas will naturally fade regardless of the modifications you’ve made. Don’t worry, the plant will display vibrant, new blossoms once more in the spring.

Can hydrangeas grow in shade?

Although they won’t blossom in complete shade, hydrangeas prefer dappled or infrequent shade. How much sun do hydrangeas need is more important to consider than whether they love the sun or the shade. Your hydrangeas require more sunlight the further north in your garden you are. A general guideline is six hours of sunlight each day. However, southern hydrangeas can thrive with just three hours of sunlight per day.

Can hydrangeas grow in full sun?

While hydrangeas prefer morning sun, they struggle in the hot, afternoon sun. For these gorgeous creatures, partial shade in the later hours of the day is optimal.

Can you grow hydrangeas in pots?

Even if you don’t have enough room in your garden to cultivate hydrangeas, you can still enjoy these lovely blossoms by learning how to grow hydrangea in a pot. As long as you follow the fundamentals of caring for hydrangeas, the procedure is rather straightforward. Select a pot with at least an 18-inch diameter to accommodate the mature size of the particular hydrangea you are growing. In order to maintain the constant moisture level that hydrangeas demand, look for non-porous containers. Excess water will be able to adequately drain thanks to drainage holes. Consider growing dwarf hydrangeas like Buttons ‘n Bows, Mini Penny, and Little Lime.

How do you keep hydrangeas from wilting?

Morning irrigation on a regular basis can assist stop withering. Some hydrangea cultivars simply can’t stand the heat. No matter how much water you give them, they will begin to wilt in the afternoon heat. Mulch applied in layers can help soil retain moisture and stay cool. You shouldn’t be concerned if your hydrangeas bloom again once the day cools. A little midday wilting is preferable to overwatering and drowning your hydrangeas.