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Late Spring and My Hydrangea is all woody stems and few leav

My hydrangea plant is all woody stems with only a few leaves starting to bud, no blooms and the axe is covered in dead leaves. I mulched it last year and pruned back, sparingly, on a few dead branches. It didn't bloom at all last year, but did get leafy. Can anybody offer advice on how to get it back to a healthy bush?

Greener Thumb
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Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2009 12:31 pm
Location: Hurst, TX USA Zone 7b/8a

Re: Late Spring and My Hydrangea is all woody stems and few

You did not say where do you live or the type of hydrangea so my "general answer" would be to maintain the soil well mulched and as evenly moist as possible with a sprinkle of fertilizer (a 1/4 to 1/2" of compost or composted manure is fine) spread up to the drip line. Not sure yet why leaf out is a problem. At worst, I would expect growth from the base but, that usually indicates that it needs winter protection. Some mopheads and lacecaps cannot handle the cold winters by themselves and need aid to releaf. Other hydrangeas are more winter hardy and well suited to the cold. They either releaf fine or when they leaf out from the crown, they bloom on new wood or rebloom from old/new wood so you always get bloomage. The dry looking sticks can be pruned by the end of May if nothing leafs out. If they leaf out partially, you can prune above the top leaves.

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