thudon
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2012 2:46 pm

oh dear - can this be saved?

Hello there:

I think I've done just about everything wrong with these poor Endless Summer hydrangeas , and I'm wondering if it's worth waiting it out to see if they come back to life next year or if I should just cut my losses and plant something new in their place come fall???

The ground here is not particularly well drained, we have direct sunlight for a good portion of the afternoon, I'm pretty sure I over "massaged" the roots before planting them, and then overwatered them after they got wilty in the sun for a few days. For reference, I'm in zone 5.

I generally research plants before I put them in my garden but I was super hasty on these....

Here are some photos... they are saggy, leaves are turning brown and dropping.

[img]https://farm9.staticflickr.com/8292/7563543892_879209cf2f.jpg[/img]

[img]https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7278/7563547578_3dc484de0d.jpg[/img]

[img]https://farm9.staticflickr.com/8148/7563551614_b8cbc44a16.jpg[/img]

Thank you so much for any advice!!

cynthia_h
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 7500
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 7:02 pm
Location: El Cerrito, CA

Sorry, but "Zone 5" isn't quite specific enough, given the weird weather that various parts of the U.S. and Canada have had this year. Could you give us a state/province where you live?

First, too: when you stick your fingers into the ground by the roots, is the soil wet or dry?

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

thudon
Newly Registered
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2012 2:46 pm

Sorry about that! I am in Ontario!

I watered them lightly yesterday morning and this morning there was dampness in the soil about an inch down. Does this help?

I had started watering them a little every day after I had left them alone for three days while I was away and when I came back they seemed really very dried out .. Now I wonder if I overwatered. I may have also damaged the roots by massaging them too vigorously before planting.

luis_pr
Greener Thumb
Posts: 816
Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2009 8:31 am
Location: Hurst, TX USA Zone 7b/8a

Oh me. Those guys look unhappy. It appears as if they have been suffering from periods of dry-moist-dry. If you can stabilize the soil moisture, they may recover.

The aim should be to try and keep the soil as evenly moist as you can with as few dry periods as possible. The finger method can help: for the next 2-3 weeks, insert a finger into the soil to a depth of 4" and see whether the soil feels dry, moist or wet. If the soil feels wet or moist, do not water. If it feels dry or almost dry, give the shrub 1 gallon of water. Then everytime that you water, make a note in a wall calendar. After the two-three weeks are over, review the notes you wrote on the calendar and determine about how often you had to water. Say, once every three days, once every four days, etc. Then set your sprinkler or drip irrigation to give the plant 1 gallon of water per watering on the same frequency (every 3 days or 4 days/etc). If the temperatures change a lot and stay there (I suggest 10-15 degrees F), use the finger method again for 2-3 weeks again. By the time the coller temperatures arrive in the Fall, you will be able to considerably reduce watering. I tend to water once a week or once every 2 weeks if the ground has not frozen and winter has been dry.

Something else that you can also do to minimize waterings and make them last longer is to apply any type of organic mulch: pine needles, hardwood mulch, etc. Apply it to a depth of 3-4" all the way to the drip line.

Luis



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