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Hydrangea help!

(19 Posts)
Coldhandscoldheart Wed 05-Oct-16 22:02:01

Can anyone offer any thoughts on this? Hydrangea by the front door. The back half is stone dead, the front half seems fine, but is too tall.
I don't know how to prune the front half (I suspect my inept pruning is what did for the back half blush ) and what to do about the back.

Should I cut the back down, then tie the front to it? Should I give up, cut it down & buy something new/different?
Complicated by the fact that this is a rental property, so need to achieve approximate equivalence.

Coldhandscoldheart Wed 05-Oct-16 22:02:53

Just realised. In that image, what I've called 'back' is to the right. The dead bit by the wall.

PinkSwimGoggles Wed 05-Oct-16 22:07:44

I would cut down the dead bits close to the ground.
they are hardy things, so in spring I would dead-head (just snap off the dry flower heads) and give it a scrub feed.

Coldhandscoldheart Wed 05-Oct-16 22:10:00

Scrub feed? Can I cut the front, alive bits back a bit do you think?. They're a bit long & impractical. Well, untidy really.

Coldhandscoldheart Wed 05-Oct-16 22:10:23

Sorry, I should have said, thank you for gelling but

Coldhandscoldheart Wed 05-Oct-16 22:11:32

Helping! Ffs. I don't think you have a gelling but confused

PinkSwimGoggles Wed 05-Oct-16 22:42:17

scrub feed, something like blood&bones or any other rose&scrub feed. usually poundshop have some this time of year.
you can tidy it up a bit, but if you cut off too much there might not be much flowers next summer.

Ditsy4 Wed 05-Oct-16 22:45:33

Interested as I bought two for £10 at RHS Tatton smile

DesolateWaist Wed 05-Oct-16 22:47:25

I have two which I'm confused about so I'm just lurking for ideas.

AnyTheWiser Wed 05-Oct-16 22:47:37

I'm also interested. I bought a couple this summer, and want to know when it's best to transplant them into the ground, please?

GiddyOnZackHunt Wed 05-Oct-16 22:51:06

My inherited elderly hydrangeas did best when I left the heads on over winter, trimmed back fairly hard to just above a good pair of budding leaves in the spring and ignored them for 50 weeks of the year grin

Verbena37 Wed 05-Oct-16 22:53:29

Once it's finished flowering, you can cut off the dead heads....although my amazing gardening MIL likes to keep her dead heads through autumn and winter to feed the birds....and they can look pretty. Before spring though, you will need to cut them back.....but making sure you don't cut into the new green shoots. I just snip off the heads and cut down towards the new growth.

JT05 Thu 06-Oct-16 08:06:26

I always leave the spent flower heads on until the spring, they protect the new growth from frosts. In late April, I prune down to a pair of strong buds, and also cut out any dead wood. Then give them a feed.

If I have bought any new hydrangeas, (usually sad, cheap ones at the end of the season!) I pot them onto a larger pot. Then plant them out the following year or keep them in an ornamental pot. They seem to survive!

Coldhandscoldheart Thu 06-Oct-16 09:32:17

Okay, so I've definitely arsed up previous pruning! I need to make it look a bit tidier for moving out is half the thing.
So I think I will trim the dead bits down & tie the alive bits up to them and maybe leave a note saying that it should be pruned a bit in April.
Actually I want some of the flowers for a vase, so I'll do that at the same time.

ClarkL Fri 07-Oct-16 16:11:06

I cut my hydrangeas the first year as soon as they flowered, so I could dry the out and display them...didn't flower much the year after. This year however the display is fantastic and I won't be trimming until Spring...actually were moving house January I guess I'm not trimming them at all. Sigh.
Is it too late to take cuttings?

dodobookends Fri 07-Oct-16 23:17:38

Better to cut out the dead bits now, but leave the rest until spring - new buds can be damaged by frosts and leaving the foliage on during the winter will help to protect it. Then cut back to the size you want when you see strong spring growth.

Coldhandscoldheart Sat 08-Oct-16 07:41:53

Right okay. Well I've cut out a good bit of the dead stuff, which was a bit less dead than I thought, some of it.
Im hoping we won't still be living here in spring, so I'll tie the rest back - essentially it encroaches right over a path - and leave a note for the next people. I might still pick some flowers though, I have a vase wot needs something in it.

Continued thanks for all the advice, we be been here four years and this bloody plant's done my head in. I'll be asking about the back garden next. smile

saythatagain Sat 08-Oct-16 07:52:53

Hydrangea people! How marvellous.
My most favourite flower. I secretly covet a blue one and for the life of me cannot make it happen. So this year, I've bought a water butt, huge pot, another hydrangea and am going to make it happen.......much to the amusement of my dh.
Any advice on how would be greatly appreciated. Because we live in an acid free soil area, I know I'm going to have my work cut out (1st world problems I know). My mil lives in the right area (west Yorkshire) and whenever we visit I take myself off to loiter around the front gardens of people lucky enough to have them growing au natural.
Apologies for jumping on the thread willy-nilly.

PinkSwimGoggles Sat 08-Oct-16 08:53:26

you need a watering can just for that 'blue' plant.
buy a deodorant crystal and put it in there, use the crystal water to waterit once a week.

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