Why Your Hydrangeas Are Not Flowering

Why Your Hydrangeas Are Not Flowering

There are 4 main reasons why your Hydrangeas may not flower:

#1 Improper Pruning

This is the most common reason that causes Hydrangeas not to bloom. Hydrangeas do not usually need to be pruned –ever- except to remove dead stems and blooms or if the plant is getting much too large.

  • All Panicle flowering types, meaning cone shaped flowers, can be pruned late fall or early spring. This will keep a shapely bush and prevent next year’s growth to have hanging flowers.
  • Pink, blue, and red ball shaped varieties are usually ones that do not like as much trimming. The newer types are re-blooming and can be lightly shaped as they are flowering. The older varieties such as Nikko Blue, flower on old wood and should be cut back in the fall.

#2 Sun/Shade Exposure

Some Hydrangeas can be planted in full sun and some part shade. For the most part they prefer morning or evening sun and on hot days afternoon shade. Keep in mind that some Hydrangeas may appear very healthy and vigorous in low light areas but they may never bloom because they need more sunlight. Many new varieties say they will tolerate full sun but their leaves may burn if we have a hot summer. Larger growing panicle types (Lime Lights, Little Limes) will tolerate a full sun location.

#3 Late Spring Freeze

Most flower buds develop on old stems. If we get a late frost, this can kill any new buds. It will start the process of budding out all over again, but much later. It should not be an issue for older established plants, but may kill a smaller young shrub. If it has already leafed out, trim off burnt leaves and give it some time. A late freeze may also kill emerging leaves and as a result most of the new growth comes from the roots. If it calls for frost after it start setting buds/shoots, to prevent this, cover up shrubs with a frost cloth, heavy blanket, or bushel basket.

#4 Fertilizer

Hydrangeas like a spring fertilizing as it begins to leaf out. A second fertilizing is recommended around July-August as its pushing out blooms.

  • Use #1 Dairy Doo Tree and Shrub Mix when planting your Hydrangeas.
  • Use #2 Espoma Soil Acidifier to lower the soils ph for blue blooms. (This is not a fertilizer).
  • Use #3 Espoma Garden-Lime to raise the soils ph for pink blooms. (This is not a fertilizer).
  • Use #4 PW Premium Continuous Release Plant Food is beneficial for a happy plant.

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