Hydrangeas bushes are beautiful pom-pom looking flowers that are native to our zone 6 climate. Hydrangeas bushes can be seen all over Massachusetts in various assortments of colors based on the soil. Before planting your hydrangea, you should plan out which type you’d like to bloom. Use acidic soil for blue or purple-blue hydrangeas. Alkaline soil with a pH above 7 for pink and red hydrangeas. Alkaline soil with a pH below 7 creates a purple hydrangea. (Source : HGTV).
Seed Starting Advice
Most people who are starting to grow hydrangeas start with the root. This can be done in the ground or in a pot.
Plant in an area with partial sun.
Trim around the root for parts that look rotting.
Dig a hole deep enough to cover the entire root, leaving 2 to 3 inches on the sides of the root.
Make sure that the top of the root meets the top layer of soil.
Remove root from hole, fill soil with water halfway.
Once water has absorbed, replace the root back into soil and fill the hole with water.
When growing hydrangeas bushes, you will need to plant them at least 3 to 10 feet apart (Source : The Almanac). This will give them plenty of space to grow out and not be on top of each other. When it comes to protecting them from pests, you should keep your eye out for holes within the flowers. Slugs can be discovered when there are munches on your petals, and can be reduced using slug traps. Other insects, like scale, aphids, beetles and fruit worms, can be reduced using an insect control spray. ( Source : Esponma).
Avoid cutting your hydrangeas when it is hot outside, since this will cause the flower to wilt. Cut within the months of August and October, which is when they are at their blooming season. Pick when the flowers are fully bloomed. (Source : Garden Guides).
The most perfect bouquet featuring hydrangeas include different types of roses, like spray roses and African roses. They also pair well with peonies and dahlias. Alongside these statement flowers, you can add smaller greens, such as babies breath, eucalyptus, delphinium, foxglove, freesia, and bells of Ireland (Source : Cascade Floral Wholesale) When it comes to the colors of the arrangement, you want them to match based on what color hydrangeas you are using. When using blue or purple hydrangeas, you should stick to a more cool toned bouquet, and when you’re using pink, you should use more warm toned flowers- white is the middle ground and can be mixed with either color. Below is an example of a bouquet mixed with both warm and cool colors that looks beautiful as well.
The following blog post is a story from the mother of a good friend of mine at Merrimack College. I would like to call her by her real name, which is Ursula, for this. Ursula has a backyard with a lot of plants and flowers, which are bound to attract creatures such as Butterflies. Last year she planted an herb garden in pots in the months of May and June of 2020. While planting these herb gardens she included herbs such as dill, parsley, and white sage. Soon July would arrive, and she would see a black butterfly flying around the pots.
Now, the eggs of these butterflies are tiny and light green, and it’s very rare for them to survive and become caterpillars because of predators. Also it was pretty surprising for Ursula to see the eggs grow up in potted plants and not in a bigger garden. So at the end of their growing stage, the Caterpillar based on its colors will become an “Asterius” or a Black Butterfly as it’s called. This wouldn’t be the only time an Asterius would make an appearance in Ursula’s garden though.
In August of 2020 Ursula would find a green and black caterpillar on her white sage plant on her deck outside. She would name her new Caterpillar friend “Guilbert.” Her kids would ostracize her for having Guilbert as a pet and for having them greet the animal. The Caterpillar would start changing, and would eat for about a week, and would thread a chrysalis as well as Cocoon for 2.5 weeks. Finally, the chrysalis would turn black on the morning of August 21, 2020, and the process of Eclosion would occur. This is a long process in the development of a Butterfly, as it can take up to an hour for their wings to strengthen. Fortunately, the butterfly would finally sprout its wings and make its place in Ursula’s garden. Based on the wing colors, the butterfly was a female.
In conclusion, I think Ursula’s experience teaches us a lesson we shouldn’t forget. It’s always the little things that matter. Having a butterfly grow in your garden may not mean much to others, but I think Ursula naming it and making her children greet it is very telling about how something so little can bring so much joy. I think this happiness is the essence of what gardening is.
Ever since I was a baby, my family and I always spend a portion of our spring and summer in Falmouth Heights, Massachusetts, which is part of Cape Cod. My nana and my grandfather, my father’s parents, bought a house on the Cape many years ago. I have created some of my favorite memories here, which include spending quality time with my family, talking walks along the beach, admiring the plants and growing my love of photography.
One of my favorite flowers found all over Cape Cod, and in my nana’s yard are hydrangeas. I love them because they add a pop of color and they remind me of my grandfather. Hydrangeas can range from red, pink, purple, blue, and white, however their color all depends on the acidity of the soil in which the plant grows. A pH scale, which goes from zero to fourteen with seven being neutral, is used to determine how acidic the soil is. If soil has a pH level greater than 7 it would produce pink hydrangeas, while a pH level less than 7 would produce blue hydrangeas. In other words, the lower the pH, the more acidic the soil is. If an individual wishes to change the color of their hydrangeas from pink to blue they can easily do so by increasing the acid in the soil. Some home remedies include, adding vinegar or lemon juice to the soil, mulching the area around the plant with coffee grounds, or even burying rusty nails or copper pennies in the soil.
My love of hydrangeas increased my love of gardening and flowers in general. When I was younger, I would help my father garden and keep the lawn on my nana’s property in healthy condition, and it eventually turned into an activity that strengthened our bond. My grandfather passed away before I was born, but he took pride in his lawn and plants. After he died, my father took on the role of tending to the yard, which was later instilled in me. Pulling weeds, planting new flowers, trimming bushes, trees and much more made me feel closer to my dad, but also my grandfather as well. Even though I did not get to meet my grandfather, I feel a connection to him by gardening the land he bought and worked hard for. Knowing that I am tending to the same hydrangeas he once did gives me the satisfaction of feeling like he is a part of my life and I am part of his.