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Video:How to Prune Hydrangeas

with Dave Etchepare

Prune hydrangeas to encourage new blooms and improve your shrub's health. With just a little work once or twice a year, your hydrangea can be blooming with larger, more beautiful flowers.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Prune Hydrangeas

Hi, I’m Dave Etchepare with Dennis’ 7 Dees Landscaping and Garden Centers in Portland, Oregon, here today with About.com. Today we’re going to talk about pruning hydrangeas.

Pruning Encourages Larger Blooms

You want to prune hydrangeas to keep them in shape and to keep them in control, so they don’t get too large. And you want to prune them at the right time, so you don’t sacrifice your blooms for the following year.You will find that if you remove some of the flowering wood by a third, that if you have less blooms the following year, those blooms will be larger. So if you just give it a haircut across the top, you’ll get more blooms but they tend to be smaller.

Prune Hydrangeas Just Above the Node

You want to prune the top one foot and you want to make sure that when you make a cut that it’s right above the node. So you don’t have these long inner nodes. So you cut right above the node, and that’s where the leaves come out of the stem.

Find Out if Your Hydrangea Blooms on New or Old Wood

There are some new varieties. For example, the Endless Summer series. And the nice thing about that variety is it blooms on new wood and old wood, So, if you prune it to the ground, it will bloom once on the new wood that grows that year. If you prune it lightly after it’s done blooming, it will bloom on last year’s wood and new wood, so you’ll get two series of blooms. The Nikko Blue is the classic mophead and they bloom on last year’s wood. So you want to make sure you don’t over prune those or prune them at the wrong time, or you will sacrifice your blooms for that year.

If you have a hydrangea that’s gotten completely out of control because it’s six feet or better or because for the location it’s at, it’s just too large, I usually recommend pruning it to the ground, knowing you’re sacrificing your blooms for the following year. Then, after that, it will be more manageable and you can prune it each year and you will get blooms each year.

If you’d like more information, stay here on About.com. Thanks for watching.

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