Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Renate Steiniger’
Hydrangeas are easily recognisable with their big rounded flower heads that cover the plants in mid to late summer. Hydrangeas have fallen out of fashion but they shouldn’t necessarily be over looked - especially not this variety with it’s extraordinary blue flowers. (Soil will affect flower colour a little - acid soil makes flowers head towards blue and alkaline producing pink. Whites stay white whatever.) They are excellent garden shrubs that will cope in sun or shade and give you a really dense block of summer colour. Quite happy growing in pots too. The flowers are excellent as cut flowers or leave them on the plant and they look great for ages.
Hydrangeas will repay you if you prune and look after them well. Keep them out of very harsh winds and prune them every Spring - cut back whole plants leaving the stems with only just a couple of strong buds. Also, take out one-third of all stems completely. Hydrangeas can get the annoying pest Scale so keep an eye out for it.
July to August
For a blue theme, mix with big and bold African Lily and the pretty Bear Tongue. Ice Plant have similar mop head flowers and they are interesting companions for the Mophead Hydrangea, especially if you leave the flowers on the hydrangeas even once they have started to fade.
height - 1.5m
width - 2m
• There are other types of Hydrangeas, those which aren't the classic mop head varieties. • Hydrangea arborescens Annabelle - more upright and with wonderful starry flowers. • Hydrangea paniculata - huge - 4m x 4m and with conical flowers • Hydrangea anomala subsp. petiolaris - climbing variety - it has white flowers and grows very slowly!