Have you ever seen a hydrangea plant in full bloom? We all agree that they are one of the most beautiful garden plants in existence.
A hydrangea that does not bloom can be frustrating at times, but the good news is that the problem can be solved quickly. Let’s see how!
Hydrangeas that don’t bloom: find out the cause
When your hydrangea does not bloom, it is due to the species of hydrangea you planted. If your hydrangea is not blooming, you need to find out which variety you planted. The most common hydrangea purchased is the Hydrangea Macrophilia. This species of hydrangea has blue or pink flowers. There are many varieties of this hydrangea. It is important to choose hydrangeas that grow well in your region. Protecting your hydrangeas in winter can help these varieties bloom better in summer.
Frost on shoots
The most common reason for failure to bloom is for flower buds to freeze in winter or during spring or fall frosts.
We can solve this problem by covering the entire bush with a straw mulch for the winter and covering its base with a 20-30 cm mound of peat or bark. We protect the plants in autumn, after the first light frost, because the flower buds that form at the top of the shoots are very sensitive to cold. The cover should be removed in early spring, but as soon as the weather forecast calls for frost, cover the plant, taking care not to damage its delicate buds.
Another of the possible causes of non-blooming is that we over-pruned hydrangeas in winter. If we prune incorrectly, reducing it too much, we will put an end to all the plant’s development. Therefore, if we want our hydrangeas to have many flowers in spring, we will have to prune in a balanced way, leaving about 50 percent of the branches unpruned. This means that:
We will not prune the most vigorous and strongest branches, which will later be the first to flower.
We will prune the rest of the branches to the center, never all the way down, so that they will flower a little later.
Occasionally, we may prune some branches all the way down to the bottom to regenerate the plant, but they will be a minority since as long as we cut from way down, the hydrangea will not flower.
Shady location or too much sun
Location can also be a problem for garden hydrangeas. The plant naturally dislikes sunny locations and prefers partial shade, but if planted in an area with too much shade it may have difficulty developing flower buds.
Lack of water
The hydrangea bush tolerates drought badly, so if the summer is dry and hot, it will develop poorly without systematic watering, its leaves will begin to wilt, and the flower buds will dry out or not develop at all.
Lack of fertilizer
The garden hydrangea blooms long and profusely and therefore needs a large amount of nutrients. If the soil lacks it and we do not provide the plant with food in the form of fertilizer, the bush will weaken significantly and in the following year it may bloom poorly or not bloom at all.
Diseases and pests
Diseases and pests can also have a negative effect on the flowering of garden hydrangeas. If they attack the plant and we do not react in time, the hydrangea may not bloom even in the next season.
More tips for making hydrangeas bloom
So, if you want a hydrangea to bloom a lot, in addition to the points described above, we need to consider the following points:
- Location: outdoors
- Light: shady and moist area
- Temperature: 59-64,4 ºF
- Watering: make sure the soil is always moist
- Fertilization: every 15 days in spring and summer with fertilizer for acidophilic plants. If it suffers from iron chlorosis, the leaves turn yellow, we will add iron chelate.