Smooth hydrangeas, also known as wild hydrangeas, are beautiful looking shrubs with giant white blooms. The shrubs are native to the southeastern United States. They are deciduous like all other hydrangeas.
Growing Hydrangeas from cuttings
Hydrangeas are better grown from cuttings. Taking a good cutting from your hydrangea for the purpose of propagation is a little bit of art, and a little bit of science. You should take your cuttings in the spring when the plant’s metabolism and growth are at their peak. Set aside time to prepare your cutting early in the morning or late in the evening, when heat stress won’t claim your vulnerable stem while it’s off the plant.
If possible, take the cutting from a branch that isn’t forming a bud. If the plant hasn’t formed buds yet, don’t worry; both blooming and non-blooming stems can develop as cuttings, but most gardeners don’t want to sacrifice a single potential bloom on the mother plant.
Use your cleanest, sharpest shears to take your cutting. Sanitize your shears with an alcohol wipe to ensure that no fungal disease creeps in to introduce fungal diseases to your new baby plants.
Choose a tender, green stem to take as a cutting. Stems that are woody and grey are less metabolically active and will take twice as long to root.
This type of hydrangea is really known for its large creamy white flowers. When the shrub first blooms, it is a light green color. As the flower matures, it turns to a creamy or bright white.
Hydrangeas do well with slightly acidic soil that is nutrient-rich. Make sure to plant these in an area that is well-drained to prevent root rot. However, the soil does need to be moist. This type of hydrangea does not do well in extended periods without rain. So be sure to water frequently, especially mid-summer. These shrubs can handle full sun depending on the variety. However, most varieties prefer to have some relief from the sun mid to late afternoon. If the shrub is in full sun, be sure to carefully watch the leaves for droopiness, which typically means it needs more water.
Hydrangeas have no serious insect or disease problems. Many species of hydrangea, including the Hydrangeas, are susceptible to bud attack, a bacterial disease, leaf spots, mold, and rust. Watch out for aphids, mites, scale, and nematodes.
These shrubs bloom on new wood. So, it is best to prune back close to the ground in late winter. If you do not prune then, you can also prune in early spring to encourage new growth. You should remove sick and dead branches that are damaged in the winter regardless.
If you do prune back to the ground in the winter, it goes a long way to help promote stem vigor.
Hydrangeas plants exhibit an upright growth habit and will reach a height of 4 to 5 feet, with a similar spread. Flower heads are large, up to 9 inches across, and possibly larger. The color is white at the flowers’ peak, although they start out with a hint of green, which returns as the flower head ages. In many climates, the shrub typically begins blooming in late June and continues flowering into fall.
Sun and Soil Requirements
Hydrangeas grow in full sun to partial shade, and the latter is preferable in dry climates. Plant it in rich garden soil that will keep the roots moist. This plant’s color is not affected by soil pH. Additional watering usually is required during hot, dry weather.
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