General Discussion:

hydrangea in New Englan

Messages posted to thread:

Doug02-Nov-02 08:42 AM EST 6b   
Susan02-Nov-02 10:14 AM EST 6a   
Ed02-Nov-02 08:00 PM EST 5a   

Subject: hydrangea in New England
From: Doug (
Zone: 6b
Date: 02-Nov-02 08:42 AM EST

I just returned from a trip to New England..beautiful!! I was very struck by what I assume was a Hydrangea Tree. Very full of bronzy flowers, and around 15 ft. Saw quite a few of them. Does anyone know what type it would be, and how hardy?? New England is at least a zone warmer that Toronto, but would love to be able to grow one. Probably can't, as have never seen one around here. Thanks!

Subject: RE: hydrangea in New Englan
From: Susan
Zone: 6a
Date: 02-Nov-02 10:14 AM EST

Were the flowers the paniculata type? Did you notice the shape of the leaves? I would assume that what you saw was either a Peegee type Hydrangea paniculata or an Oakleaf Hydrangea quercifolia. Both can grow quite tall - the Peegee is usually taller. The Oakleaf one has very distinctive, large leaves shaped like giant oak leaves and the leaves turn interesting colors in the fall; the leaves stay on the branches quite late in the winter; the bark on the Oakleaf hydrangea also peels, giving additional winter interest. Both hydrangeas will grow here, although the Oakleaf one sometimes has winterkill on the flower buds (it's an 'old wood' bloomer...) so sometimes it doesn't flower after a bad winter. Mine didn't flower in 2001 because of winterkill but it did well this year. My Oakleaf is my favorite hydrangea. Mine was planted in 2000. It's about 4 feet tall now and I expect it to get to 8-10 feet. The Peegee types will grow another few feet teller. They are 'new wood' bloomers so they don't have a problem with winterkill. They don't have as interesting leaves and do not usually have particularly showy fall color.

New England soils are usually very acid and the climate is usually quite moist. Hydrangea tend to do well under those conditions. (The mophead types there are usually blue because of the acid soil...) But, as long as you can give your hydrangeas moist conditions in partial shade, either of these hydrangeas should do well for you.

Subject: RE: hydrangea in New Englan
From: Ed
Zone: 5a
Date: 02-Nov-02 08:00 PM EST

A tree-form P.G. approx. 10 ft. tall I spotted in rural central Leeds Co. in Eastern Ont. 25 years ago has annually been the focus of much critical attention because of its unfailing spectacular bloom; during the intervening years, I have not detected any change whatever in either size or performance.

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