hddgardener
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Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2010 5:59 pm
Location: Willmington, DE

Non-blooming hydrangea

I am not getting any blooms on my hydrangeas. Does the soil need treating? How? What? How often? Please give me some suggestions. Thank you for your help.

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rainbowgardener
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Posts: 25303
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

Not necessarily. One thing that can cause hydrangeas (and other shrubs) not to bloom is too much high nitrogen fertilizer, especially if they are planted in a lawn. Lawn fertilizer is high in nitrogen, which encourages leaf growth at the expense of flowering (for grass we only want leaves, not flowers).

You didn't say anything about how the hydrangea is situated or treated. Hydrangeas like part shade or filtered light, more so in hotter climates. But too much shade will keep it from blooming.

Another question is if you have been pruning it and if so how and when. Many hydrangeas bloom on last year's stems. If you prune in the fall or winter, you are cutting the buds off.

How old is this hydrangea? Generally they don't bloom the first year you plant them, occasionally not the second year.

Is your hydrangea rated cold hardy enough for your area? Did you have a late spring frost after the hydrangea started leafing out? That can kill off all those flower buds that have been waiting since last year. Are all the new growth stems coming from the ground (rather than growing from old stems)? That's a sign that it was too cold for it in the winter and all of last year's growth died back and it only came back from the roots. So those are all new stems and won't bloom til next year.

Let us know if any of these seem to describe your situation. If not, give us some more information about what's been happening.
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