There are hydrangea kinds that bloom on either fresh or old wood, or even both. Both new and old wood are the growth of the following year (spring), respectively.
- Consider that this year, you bought a Nikko Blue Hydrangea. For the next year, Nikko’s produce blooms in the fall. Your Nikko is therefore creating blooms this fall that will blossom in the spring.
- Therefore, you wouldn’t want to completely prune your Nikko Blue Hydrangea this fall while you are pruning your perennials. Pruning the Nikko Blue Hydrangea this fall would effectively mean cutting off your hydrangea flowers for the upcoming spring.
- The idea behind Endless Summer, a hydrangea variety that blooms on both old and new wood, is that the plant will set blooms this fall to blossom not only in the spring of the following year, but will also keep producing blooms in the spring of the following year to extend the blossoms into the summer.
- Once more, pruning your Endless Summer hydrangea in the fall would mean removing some of the flowers that would blossom in the spring.
The hydrangea’s plant tag will indicate whether it blooms on fresh wood, old wood, or both. It is typically preferable to wait until spring to prune your hydrangeas. As the plant grows, you’ll see stems that are fragile when bent and lack any leaves. Since these stems are dead and won’t produce any flowers, they should be clipped close to the plant’s base.
The second reason why your hydrangeas aren’t blooming is probably the weather. Buds of hydrangeas are extremely susceptible to cold. Therefore, it is a good idea to wrap your hydrangea for the winter if it is an old wood hydrangea. Keep in mind that old wood hydrangeas establish their blooms for the following spring in the fall. Therefore, you won’t have blossoms in the spring if the fall-produced buds are frozen in the winter.
You can wrap anything with regular burlap. Burlap should be wrapped around the plant and filled with mulch or leaves after the first hard frost and after the hydrangea’s leaves have dropped. In order for the buds to survive the winter and sprout the following spring, the plant receives insulation from this. Never wrap your hydrangeas in plastic. When warmer winter days arrive, the plant cannot breathe since plastic, unlike burlap, doesn’t breathe. As a result, the plant can heated to such high temperatures that it cooks within the plastic and perishes.
The second most frequent weather-related cause hydrangeas do not blossom is late spring killing frosts. We saw really chilly temperatures in April both this year and last year after beautiful spring days. When springtime temperatures drop below freezing, hydrangeas need to be covered with an old beach towel or sheet. Because of the temperature dip, there won’t be any blossoms.
The majority of hydrangeas require at least 3 to 4 hours of light per day to bloom. The best light is in the early morning, midday light is acceptable if it is dabbled light rather than beating sun, and afternoon sun is typically too hot. Check the plant label, though. Newer hydrangea cultivars are being created that can withstand more sun exposure time and sun intensity. A hydrangea in full sun will require much more watering than one in diffused light, so keep that in mind.
High nitrogen fertilizer should not be used to feed hydrangeas. Nitrogen is indicated by the first number on the fertilizer ratio. (The ratio stands for N, P, and K) For healthy leaves and general good growth, some nitrogen (N) is required; however, a ratio of 8-16-6 or any similar combination with a higher middle or phosphorus (P) value is preferred. The growth of roots and shoots is encouraged by phosphorus, which improves the blooming process.
Potash (K), the third element’s last quantity and the lowest ratio, is for plant hardiness. Because hydrangeas prefer acidic soil, they can be fertilized with fertilizers designed for such plants. Hydrangeas only require fertilizing twice a year, once in early spring and once in mid-summer. To avoid root burn, make sure the soil is always moist before applying a fertilizer.