Dear Hydrangea Enthusiasts,
Welcome to the September
2006 edition of the Hydrangeas Plus® e-mail newsletter.
It's been a busy summer here at the nursery. I really did start on
this newsletter in August. Our oldest daughter is starting Kindergarden
this fall and I must admit, I'm a bit nervous. School certainly has
changed since I was a kid. It is a wonderful school out here in the
country and has a fabulous reputation for education. So why am I so
Hydrangeas here in the nursery are looking fabulous. Even with our
seven (yes, that is 7) days over 100 degrees. Here in the willamette
valley, we're typically lucky to get just one. One day we had tempatrues
reach 107 degrees. Needless to say, the hydrangeas don't like those
temperatures and they didn't hesitate to tell us. Regardless, the plants
have rebounded and look great.
I am sad to say that we lost another hydrangea advocate in July. One
of our faithful wholesale customers, Larry Thompson, passed away suddenly
in July. Larry and Marsha Hildebrand bought Regan Nursery in Fremont,
California in 1995. Regan Nursery is a well known nursery (retail and
mailorder) for its roses. Larry expanded the line of hydrangeas they
carried at the retail location and became well known for the vast selection
available (over 70 varieties). Please visit them online www.regannursery.com or in person
at 4268 Decoto Road in Fremont. Marsha and the able staff will continue
to service your every need. Our thoughts and prayers are with Marsha
and the Regan Nursery family.
We had a significant loss in our immediate family in late July. My
great aunt Maryann Mahaffey passed away after a courageous battle with leukemia.
Maryann fought for so many causes and people in her lifetime. She
was a council woman and president of the council for the city of Detroit
for over 30 years. She was the first Mahaffey woman to keep her last
name and when she ran for election in the 70s, the opposition took her to
court and challenged the legality of her campaign because she didn't take
her husband's name. The suit went all the way to the Michigan Supreme
court where she won the right to run. She lost the close election but
served as a role model for many to follow. She was such an amazing
woman and I will miss her very, very much. She has been a true inspiration
in my life and always taught me to "do" and not just watch from the sidelines.
Back in stock soon
Most of the hydrangeas are back in stock! Order now to ensure
your first choice will be available. You can select fall planting
or spring planting. If you're unsure about fall planting, use this
simple rule of thumb. Do you have at least 6 (or 8) weeks before
your first hard frost? If yes, fall planting is really the best time
to plant. Cooler temperatures allow the plant's roots to focus on
growth not getting water. Usually this means zones 6 and above are appropriate
for fall planting. As always, mulch your plants for the first few
winters to be sure the roots get established before winter and maximize root
There are just a few of the one year plants not yet available. The
Paniculatas and Quercifolias are always slow to root and sometimes take
another season to get big enough.
Thank you for your patience. If you'd like to be notified when
a particular variety and size is ready, just go to that product online at
and enter your email address after clicking on the 'Keep me updated' button
and we'll send you an email when it's ready.
Memorial for Penny McHenry
The Atlanta Botanical Garden is honoring Penny by naming the
new hydrangea collection in Penny's memory, Penny McHenry Hydrangea Collection.
Please indicate on your check that your donation is in memory
of Penny McHenry and send it to the Penny McHenry Hydrangea Collection.
Please mail your donation to:
Atlanta Botanical Garden
1345 Piedmont Ave.
Atlanta, GA 30309
Also note that Penny's house is up for sale. Anyone interested in preserving
this hydrangea heaven and purchasing the property, please let me know and
I will put you in touch with the right people in Atlanta.
Belgium Hydrangea Conference
All you hydrangea fanatics out there, need an excuse to go to Europe?
Visit the Mallet mecca for hydrangeas? There is the International
Hydrangea conference schedules for 2007 at the Ghent Universtiy Botanical
Garden in Belgium. The dates are August 16 - 19, 2007. All the
experts IN THE WORLD will be there for this wonderful conference. Start
saving your pennies - or $100s! More information to follow about coordinating
US registration. If you're interested in group travel from the NW,
please let me know. I have some friends in the educational travel
business that could swing a deal if we have enough interest.
See more on the website at www.hydrangea2007.be/en
Le Tour de Plants: September 16-24, 2006
The Oregon Association of Nurseries is pround to present our first annual
'Le Tour de Plants'. Almost 30 garden centers in Oregon (up and down
I-5) are offering great new plants, fun activities for you and the kids and
friends, special deals, hands-on workshops and demonstrations, prize drawings,
garden art and much more. Hop in the car and visit participating
Le Tour de Plants garden centers. Spend the day, weekend or week discovering
new garden centers and exploring your old favorites. You’ll see fresh new
plants and ideas galore for your balcony or yard. This is a week long,
self-guided tour designed to get our local gardeners excited about fall and
all the wonderful offerings and opportunities that will enhance your outdoor
living space. Visit the informative website at http://letour.oan.org
There are some special activities involved, too. Two wholesale nuseries
(not typically open to the public) will open their gardens for a limited
Monrovia (Dayton, Or) on Sept 16th and Sept 23rd from 9:00am to 2:00pm
Terra Nova (Canby, Or) on September 16th from 12:00 pm to 4:00pm
Both these growers have a fabulous collection of hydrangeas for you to see!!!!
Whether you’re a casual or master gardener, you’ll find something of interest
on the Le Tour de Plants garden center excursion! Purchase a green
Monrovia silicon wristband for $2 at Le Tour de Plants participating garden
centers and receive special discounts at all Le Tour de Plants garden center
locations! Wristbands will be available for sale at these participating garden
centers beginning Sept. 5, 2006.
The BLUSHING BRIDE (PPAF) are here
We've had lots of questions about new varieties of hydrangeas and we're
please to offer a Dr. Michael Dirr and University of Georgia original.
This is the second in the Endless Summer series of hydrangeas that
is being introduced by Bailey's Nursery of Minnesota. This hybrid produces
a double bloom starting a bit mellow yellow then aging white. Blooms
will age pink or blue depending on your soil pH. The leaves are a striking
contrast to the blooms with dark, lush green leaves that have proven resistent
to many mildews and molds. I'm very excited about this new offering.
We got them in the nursery in late June, right before the hottest valley
temperatures in two decades. They've taken a month or so to recover
but they are huge! This is a great plant to complement your Endless
Summer(tm). Bailey notes that Blusshing Bride is hardy to USDA Zone
5 and is currently being tested for zone 4. Like other hydrangeas,
the Bride needs a bit of afternoon shade. See the picture on the website
- It's fabulous. The aged bloom is chartruese green with hints of deep
red. I only have this available in the three year size. I'm hoping
to get some smaller ones next year.
The Hydrangeas Plus 2007 catalog is in the works
Have you moved? Or not purchased plants from us in a while,
we may not have your current address. We will do our bulk mailing of
the catalog in January so please make sure your address is up to date. Send
me an email (to [email protected] with subject line: 2007
catalog) and I'll update your records.
Past Newsletters online
Did you miss a newsletter? We have put all the newsletters
on the website. It's on the left side of the website.
One-year & Three-year fall plant sale
It's that time of year again. We have too many plants left!!
We are offering some of our 3-year plants for just $30 and select
varieties of one-year plants for half price (minimum of two required). These
plants can be shipped now or in the spring, just order by the September
30th deadline. Here are the plants we're offering in our fall sale. Limited
time only and limited plants available.
One year plants..............Must use coupon code 2 FOR 1 in the
coupon code box after placing first hydrangea in shopping cart..............see
in catagory On Sale Now on website
Komacha (also known as Pretty Maiden)
Souvenior de Presidente
Three year plants........................No coupon necessary............see
in general 3-year hydrangea catagory
Pee Wee (paniculata)
Komacha (also known as Pretty Maiden)
Commonly Asked Questions
Q: Hi I like to know if I can have the following hydrangeas for
the area I live: My zone is between 5b and 6a and I like the Hydrangea Red
Star and Hydrangea Alpengluhen(glowing embers).I don't want to fuss with
them in the winter months.I don't want to plant in pots. I need to know if
they will bloom on old and new growth. If they grow on new growth they will
be ok but if the grow only on old stems, they won't make it, they won't bloom
the next year. I have 2 like that and never bloomed. Beautiful foliage but
no flowers.Please answer my questions and if I can have these two I will
order them as soon as I can.
A: You may have a tough time getting these deeper colored hydrangeas
to bloom for you in your area. The vivid colored hydrangeas have been
bred to be that deep and are not as hardy as some of the paler colored
varieties. These definitely bloom on old growth - probably like your
ones that have beautiful foliage but not flowers. Does your hydrangea
that hasn't bloomed die back to the ground every year? Then that's
probably the trouble.
I've been getting a lot of calls from your area and it really seems like
the winters have been unusually damaging to the hydrangeas. I know
you don't want to hear this but the best way to ensure blooms is to protect
your hydrangeas in the winter months by covering them with burlap or thermal
blanket once they loose their leaves in the fall. That will give you
some protection from the winter weather.
Please don't hesitate to contact me if you have further questions.
Q: Please recommend a 6 feet white lacecap hydrangea shrub with
large flowers which remain white in the fall for a slightly shaded location
between my front lawn and my neighbor's driveway. I would like to plant a
few of them as a hedge. I live in Queensbury which is about 50 miles north
of Albany, N.Y. near the Lake George area. Our area is classified as zone
5. Thank you very much! I enjoy your newsletter a lot.
A: I'm having trouble thinking of something that will meet all
First, zone 5 pretty much eliminates the macrophylla (big leaf) hydrangeas
unless they bloom on new wood.
Another trouble I have is that it must stay white in the fall. The
other varieties I'll recommend will most like change color by then.
Here's some of the choices.
Blushing Bride (white macrophylla that blooms on new wood - NEW!! but will
age blue/pink depending on the pH of the soil and then turn antique green)
Paniculata - white conical blooms that open a bit later than macrophylla
hydrangeas but by middle of September, age pink, red, burgundy. These
bloom on new wood too.
Arborescens - native American hydrangea that starts green then ages creamy
white and then back to green, hardy to zone 4!! blooms on new wood
Oakleaf - native American hydrangea with conical shaped leaves and fabulous
oak tree shaped leaves. Blooms age red and burgundy (along with the
leaves) in the fall.
I'm sorry I don't have anything that will stay white. Please let me
know if I can be of further assistance.
Q: I've had a Nikko Blue hydrangea for two years and each
summer it just barely makes it. Last fall I transplanted it to our new house
and this spring it made it but right now (August) it's green, short, and
no blooms. I live in NE Indiana (zone 5). Do you have any suggestions to
revive this plant? Thanks.
A: Hydrangeas don't bloom for several reasons but because you are zone
5, I suspect it's weather related. Hydrangeas bloom on old wood and
if the old wood dies back every year (for instance, your Nikko is growing
from the ground every year), you will see very few blooms. I can suggest
that you wrap the plant and protect it from the elements. Buds are
hardy to about 0 degrees.
The reasons why hydrangeas don't bloom are usually (1) too much pruning (2)
improper pruning time (3) weather - too cold or transition to winter/summer
too drastic (4) too much shade (5) too much fertilizer.
Now to talk about the growth. Check the pH of your soil. Hydrangeas
grow best in slightly acidic conditions and I suspect your soil (or water
if city provided) could be the trouble. Ideally, pH should be below
6.0 on the scale. Have a local agriculture college of extension agency
help you find a testing lab. Or, most garden centers can help.
Q: Illustrations in order to prune my plants correctly
A: It really depends on the variety. Here is a link to
pruning for general mopheads & lacecaps
We also have some hints & tips in past newsletters. Judith King
also has detailed information by variety.
Q: This is the first year I have grown hydrangeas and am looking
forward to some beautiful blooms next year. I do have something eating
on the leaves of several of my plants. I've put slug bait out but that
hasn't really helped. Do you know what could be eating them and how
to get rid of the pests? Some of the leaves being eaten are four
feet off the ground (that's on a climbing hydrangea.). The other plant
being bothered is only about a foot high. The leaves that have
been eaten on look just like they would look if slugs got to them.
Do I just need more slug bait or some kind of bug spray?
A: This may sound a little strange but set your alarm clock
and go outside with a flashlight in the middle of the night. Most of
these leave munching bugs are nocturnal and are eating your plants in the
here are some possibilities (although it may depend on where you are located)
Each will have a different prevention technique. Also, check with your
local garden center or agricultural extension office. They will probably
be able to tell you what is eating leaves in your area..
Q: We recently planted annabelles and lamarth in our new garden.
The plants are getting alot of sun and our weather has been usually hot.
I water them regularly, but the leaves are browning around the edge. THey
were planted the end of May. Is this normal for the first year? Should I
A: Could it be too much water around the roots?
Unfortunately the signs of too much water and not enough water are very,
Hydrangeas do like water but they don't like their roots to be sitting in
it for long periods of time. If you amended your soil, some potting
mixes are a bit dense and the water doesn't have anyplace to go.
In your heat and weather, you must water a lot but hydrangeas are relatively
shallow rooted plants so watering less and more often is better (in general).
The only way to tell for sure what's happening is the take out the plant
from the location and look at the roots and the soil surround them.
Is it soggy or dry?
I hope that helps. Please let me know if I can be of further assistance.
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