Wild Hydrangea - Hydrangea Arborescens
A must have for most gardens in zones 4-9, the hydrangea arborescens or "wild hydrangea" is a crowd pleaser for people and beneficial insects. Known to draw in butterflies and other pollinators, this woody, perennial shrub is a helpmate to neighboring plants. The large, florist quality blooms are stunning in cut flower arrangements and, also, dry beautifully for extended enjoyment. Blooms can be expected sometime in June and continue their display through August. Wild hydrangea flowers start out with a greenish hue and then mature to beautiful white rounded bunches of tiny, four petal blooms that sit on top of tall, silvery brown cane stems. Underneath the white mounds sit medium sized dark green leaves, oval shaped with serrated edged. Mature shrubs will reach about 3 to 6 feet tall and around 4 to 6 feet wide. The wild hydrangea plant blooms on new growth which makes it perfect for areas with harsh winters. In very early spring, stems should be pruned back to just above ground level in order to make room for the new growth. Any suckers that protrude out can be pruned off to keep the original plant shape or they can be allowed to grow in order to fill in areas as desired. Wild hydrangea flourish in gardens with soil that is slightly acidic and is moist with good drainage. A little mulch in the spring, or after planting, will help to keep the the moisture levels pleasant; while also helping with soil temperature and weed control. Wild hydrangea love morning sun, but do best with a little shade during the hottest parts of the day. During dry spells, the wild hydrangea will benefit from a little extra water, but overall care of the plant is minimal, making it a beautiful choice.