Posts Tagged ‘hydrangeas’

Busy Gardening and Fighting With Computers

blue hydrangea address labelsI work online. I spend anywhere from 5 to 10 hours a day online either creating for my Zazzle stores or promoting products. But, after my laptop began giving me trouble, I was forced to buy a new computer. I’ve gone from a pc to a Mac and that means a learning curve. My biggest problem is figuring out the photo area. With the option of “pictures” and “iPhoto” I can’t seem to integrate the two, or access the photos I want when I want.

Along with all this brain crowding of technology that I dislike immensely, my vegetable gardens have been overflowing with cucumbers, zucchini, parsley, and now tomatoes. It’s almost time to plant lettuce and peas for the fall season so there is garden clean up to do as well.

Fortunately the weather has been great. In fact, it’s been very cool. When I went to the dump yesterday I noticed that some trees are beginning to change color! Does this mean the foliage season will begin early?

My hydrangeas, on the other hand, are not blooming. The plants have grown nicely, but the macrophyllas are disappointing. Now I am wondering if I fertilized them too much in Spring. Or was the summer too cool? I’m not sure, but after waiting a year for my beautiful blue hydrangeas to bloom, I have only ONE bud that will be blue. On the other hand my Pinky Winky is looking wonderful! A little lop-sided thanks to the munching from the deer, but it’s full of flowers and they look so pretty. Once I get my photos straightened out I will share my pictures here.

New Free Hydrangeas – Propagating My Blushing Bride

how to propagate hydrangeas

The Blushing Bride after 2 new plants were dug

Last summer I had noticed that my ‘blushing bride’ hydrangea had low-lying branches which were taking root. I had successfully propagated a hydrangea before – started a new bush from an existing one – by digging up a rooted stem and transplanting it.

There is all kinds of info about taking and rooting leaf cuttings to begin a hydrangea plant, but the ground root layering method will give you a larger plant with a stronger root system. And you have an instant new shrub.

Click my link above to see my story about doing this in the past, or follow along here on my blog, and I’ll explain what I did this time – with pictures!

This method of gaining a new, free plant for your yard (or to give to a friend) works with the macrophylla variety of hydrangeas which tend to have branches that grow close to the ground. In my yard I grow the blue endless summer and the white blushing bride which are this type. Their flowers are rounded and the color of the flower can be changed according to the soil conditions.

Once you find those low lying branches and find one that is rooted to the dirt, tug gently to see if it’s rooted well. If it comes right up, put it back (cover it with lots of dirt) and add a weight (like a rock) to hold the root down into the soil. I leave those to dig up at a later time.

rooting hydrangeas

The rock will hold the stem in place until the roots get larger and stronger.

The offshoots that I dig up are well rooted and look like little hydrangea plants all on their own. It is easiest to do this in Spring before all the leaves have come out and make it difficult to see around the base of the shrub. As I searched around the base of my original plant, I found one well-rooted shoot by itself, and two that were so close together that I kept them as one plant.

Clip the stem(s) that run under the dirt from the original plant to the new one. Dig around and down under the new plant as best that you can and put it in it’s new home. It helps to know where you will put it, and get that area ready before you dig up the new one! Do you know how to plant hydrangeas?

picture tutorial to propagate hydrangeas by root layering

Find the stems to cut and remove the new little plants from the original.

As with all newly planted shrubs, give it plenty of water and watch it each day to make sure it’s doing well. Lots of sun will make this type of hydrangea wilt, but after watering it should bounce back.

I now have two new ‘Blushing Bride’ plants (see my pics below), and best of all they cost me nothing but a little time!

baby hydrangea bush

New plant #1

propagated hydrangea plant

New hydrangea plant #2

The Endless Summer in Spring

hydrangea leaves in spring

Spring Growth on my Endless Summer Hydrangea

It’s May and while the black flies swarm and temperatures are on a roller coaster the hydrangeas in my yard are growing new leaves. My Endless Summer plant has lots of new growth. I’ve left the bare stems just in case something pops out along them. In general, I don’t prune this plant. It’s relatively small anyway so there is no need. I am not adding any new perennials to my yard this year, other than the ones I will propagate, but this is a good time to buy and plant hydrangeas in the landscape.

I added some bonemeal around the base and will eventually add new dirt too. Right now I am busy readying my vegetable gardens for planting – hopefully this weekend. Once the fabric pot raised beds have all the dirt they need, I will add what’s left to the flowers. My Pinky Winky and Limelight hydrangeas all look fine too. In a couple months I’ll see some flowers. Can’t wait!

Mother’s Day Blues

Image
Or should I say, blue for Mother’s Day. It’s sunny and bright and beautiful for Mother’s Day here in New Hampshire, and I don’t have the blues, just pictures of blue flowers. There are no hydrangea flowers in the yard yet, so I’ve gone into my massive archive (haha) and pulled out a favorite photo to share.

I will be heading outdoors soon and hopefully the black flies will leave me alone. I have a mound of dirt to move around in my trusty wheelbarrow. There are seeds to plant and grow in my little greenhouse and plenty of other things awaiting my attention.
But first I have to pick up my son. Then the day will be mine.

I don’t have a Mother to celebrate so I get to celebrate my own motherhood. I’ve been a mom for nearly 37 years and I like to think that I have done a good job.
I hope that my children have learned some good things from me. Like perseverance, independence, thankfulness, and the importance of having a good work ethic. I think all my children have turned out well, and of course they are still evolving, but in general they have good hearts and are very decent people.

So Happy Mother’s day to all the moms who may come across this post today. The blue flower is for you as my wish that you will stay strong in this journey of motherhood that is really never-ending. And for the mom’s who do it all alone, you are not alone in your journey. There are many of us out there who also have to make our best attempt to “do it all”. It’s impossible, so pass on the things that can wait and take care of the things that won’t. Children grow up very fast and our job is to see that they grow up well. There are great rewards for that.

My Hydrangeas in May 2014

bare branches hydrangea

The Pinky Winky in May

It’s May and I have been getting outdoors to check on my hydrangeas and do some yard clean up. This photo of my Pinky Winky hydrangea plant was taken about a week ago, but it still looks about the same. Some leaf buds are forming along the stems, but that’s about it. The Limelight plants look about the same.

I decided to prune them in late Fall last year instead of waiting until Spring. The reason was mainly that when I left the dried flowers on the long stems of the limelight variety, the snow would weigh them down. So I pruned them for the winter and hopefully they will still bloom nicely.

My endless summer plants have larger leaves protruding up from the base of the plant and the Blushing Bride has little baby plants that are rooted. I plant to dig them up and transplant them once I have a spot for them and the weather has warmed.

All but the Pee Gee are still growing and looking good. I can’t say as much for some of my other perennials.   The rhododendrons that I was hoping would get big and beautify the yard are practically dead.  Apparently deer consider them a delicious meal and they chew off every leaf during winter. Even with netting over them, they have been devoured.  If the plants survive the summer I will try covering them with burlap next winter.  Don’t want to think about winter yet though!

My Blue, Endless Summer Hydrangea is Blooming!

blue hydrangeas

My Endless Summer

My blue hydrangea bush is blooming and I want to share my pictures.

I went away on a little vacation a couple of weeks ago and when I returned, I found that my gardens were producing some flowers! And my Endless Summer, blue hydrangea had little flowers.

I’m always eager to see the color of the hydrangea flowers, and I had only grown them for one year previously, so I hoped they would be that same pretty blue. And they are! The bloom in my picture here is so lovely. I will be using it for some new stationery at my BlueHyd store.

In the mean time, I am taking the best photos and making posters to sell at the Zazzle store. I’ve enlarged the images so they will look fine as large size prints.  Just need to get them made.

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