Hydrangea Trees and The End of Summer

hydrangea treeI’ve been enjoying the big hydrangea trees that I see blooming in my neighborhood. How lovely it would be to have a big tree with these lovely blooms! For one thing, hydrangea flowers last a long time, so the tree would look beautiful all summer and into fall.

None of my hydrangea shrubs are very large yet, and this year the blue one did not bloom well. I have only one blue flower, which is disappointing. But the only hydrangea in my yard that will become a small tree is the Pinky Winky.

Certain hydrangeas can be trimmed to become trees. The Limelight can be purchased as a tree, so obviously you could trim it to become one.

My Limelight bushes had long stems and I was experimenting with ways to get them to grow more compactly, but then I moved away.   I planted a Limelight hydrangea on each side of my front steps, and they really needed to be in a place with more space to grow.  Their long lanky stems may have been caused from lack of sun, although they did get sun, but not all day.

flowering limelight hydrangea
Limelight Hydrangea – August 20th, 2014

One of my favorite hydrangeas is the Pee Gee (Paniculata grandiflora – PG). I bought one but it died (photo below), due to my poor choice of planting location. I never had a chance to get another one while I lived in New Hampshire and now in Florida, they won’t survive.

The Pee Gee has beautiful white flowers and can be trained into a tree by choosing one main stem, or possibly two, and removing the others. This is the basic way to train a shrub into a tree. Spring is the best time to do this, as the shrub will be ready to take off and grow. Pee Gee’s bloom on new wood, so all new growth in Spring has the potential to produce flowers. For that reason, never trim late in the season when flower heads could be removed.

The website The Spruce has more information about the Pee Gee and how to care for it and turn it into a tree.

white flowers pee gee
Beautiful White Flowers of the Pee Gee Hydrangea

A Death in The Hydrangea Family

I’ve been waiting, with little hope, that my pee gee hydrangea (grandiflora) would begin to show some green. Of all the new hydrangea additions to my yard last Spring, it’s the only one that seems to have died.
I managed to get a few photos of it’s pretty white flowers last summer, and I had hoped it would grow nicely in the new season, but it’s not to be. By now I would be seeing some signs of growth. My son stepped on it and I think that is what did it in, but maybe not. It may have already died over winter.

white flowers pee gee
Little Pee Gee

The others – the Pinky Winky, Limelights and Endless summer are full of leaves so I know they have survived over winter. I found a Pee Gee tree when I was out at the nursery the other day and those become so pretty. I am jealous of people who have big yards with room to grow flowering trees. Recently the whole area where I live is alive with color. From fluffy white and pink specimens to the gorgeous Japanese magnolias (my favorites), I envy yards with those typed of ornamentals. I hope to get a photo of the flowering dogwood tree I saw last year just down the street. It was a beauty.
Anyway, my attention is turned to the remaining hydrangeas in my yard. I look forward to the blue flowers especially.

My Trouble With The Pee Gee

white flowers pee gee
Little Pee Gee

When I bought six hydrangea shrubs this past Spring, one of them was a Pee Gee (paniculata – Grandiflora). The tag said that it wanted some shade so after some thought, I ended up putting it at the edge of the yard near some big trees that would shade it partially. I didn’t know that it would bloom that first year but it did and had some very dainty, very white flowers at the ends of it’s long stems.

The flowers were pretty, but they drooped to the ground and we got lots of heavy rain after that which beat the bush down flat almost. By the time summer was over, the shrub was not looking too good. It has many, long thin branches that left the leaves lying in the dirt.

I ended up giving it a pruning and I don’t know Continue reading “My Trouble With The Pee Gee”

The Winter Bouquet Sans Hydrangeas

Dried flowers and weeds bouquet
Fall and Winter Bouquet

I’ll have to dig out my old photo of some dried hydrangeas I had years ago when I first moved to the northeast. The house we bought had the most amazing plants and shrubs growing all over. It’s where I learned about what grew in the north as opposed to the Florida plants I was used to growing.

The yard had a big wisteria vine covering an arbor. It never bloomed while I lived there (only 2 years), but it was amazing. There was a hydrangea tree which got pretty white flowers on it and they would dry up at the end of summer and become pretty shades of tan and pink. I’m pretty sure it was a Pee Gee hydrangea.

I have a photo of those dried flowers somewhere, but this winter I have to make due with my dried flower bouquet without hydrangeas.   It has some weeds, coneflowers, grass and a pinecone.

I can’t wait to have hydrangeas growing in my yard – and other flowers. I miss having beautiful gardens. It will be a lot of work, but I know that if God gives me the time and abilities, I will make this yard into a stunning showcase! Winter is a time to rest and plan. And I have big plans!