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How Long do Hydrangea Flowers Last?

With large blooms in pink, blue and white, hydrangea bushes are a visually striking and popular garden plant. Individual hydrangea blooms can last for weeks at a time, but the plant flowers throughout the entire spring-summer season.

Hydrangeas can also be grown in planters, especially if you don’t have enough space in your garden. This begs the question if non-potted hydrangea blooms last longer than potted hydrangea blooms?

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In theory, no. If potted hydrangeas are well looked after, their blooms will last equally long as those of garden planted hydrangeas.

In practice, things are a bit different, because many novice gardeners might have trouble with caring for a potted hydrangea.

Below, you can read about my tips on how to make hydrangea blooms last longer, regardless of where it’s planted — pot or garden.

Make Hydrangea Blooms Last Longer

You can help hydrangea blooms last longer if you pay special attention to several aspects while caring for these plants. The tips below can be applied to both potted and non-potted hydrangeas.

– Keep the soil moist but not wet

Moist soil will keep your hydrangea well hydrated and will keep flowers from wilting. Pay special attention to how moist the soil is during hot summer days to prevent the plant from drooping and blooms from fading too soon.

Hydrangeas that you bring home from the garden center usually come in a small pot. If you continue to keep your hydrangea in that small pot, it’s going to wither away and lose its blooms.

Small pots dry out more quickly causing the plant to become dehydrated and flowers to wilt. Move your hydrangea in a larger pot and use well-draining soil for repotting.

Be careful not to overwater your hydrangeas. Too much water can open the way to other problems including rotting roots and fungal issues.

– Plant in a location with partial shade or diffused light

Inadequate sun exposure can also affect how long blooms will last. Too much sun and your hydrangea can get dehydrated and blooms can fade. Sunburn is also a real danger, so make sure to avoid exposure to full sun during the hours when sunshine is the strongest.

If your hydrangea gets access to very little sun, it will have trouble blooming and the blooms that are produced may be smaller, less vibrant and won’t last long.

– Fertilize your hydrangea for more vigorous growth and bigger blooms

A little fertilizer does a lot for these plants. Hydrangeas should be fertilized no more than 2-3 times per year. I usually start fertilizing in early spring, then apply fertilizer once or twice more during the growing season.

A good quality fertilizer formulated for hydrangea plants will improve the vibrancy of the foliage, lead to stronger growth and enhance the color and lifespan of blooms.

How Many Times do Hydrangeas Bloom in a Season?

The blooming frequency of your hydrangeas is determined by the hydrangea variety you’re growing. Some hydrangeas will start blooming in spring and continue until mid-summer. Other hydrangeas will start blooming in early summer until fall.

The trick to making your hydrangea bloom more is to deadhead spent blooms to make way for newer ones. When deadheading hydrangeas be careful not to cut below newly formed leaves as these may very well grow bulbs and flowers.

Also, don’t cut leaves and woods unless they’re dried out. Some hydrangeas will bloom only from old woods, others require new wood to grow blooms. Cutting these will result in your hydrangea not blooming at all.

Therefore, make sure to only cut the stem of spent blooms and preserve new leaves and bulbs so that your hydrangea can continue blooming throughout the season.

Deadheading hydrangeas will also keep the plant looking tidy and help with the aeration of hydrangea bushes.

Can You Keep Hydrangea Flowers in a Vase?

Yes, hydrangea flowers make for an enchanting decorative display if kept in a vase. Problem is that if you don’t take care of them, they’ll not last only a few days before they start to wilt and lose their petals.

If you’re worried about flowers wilting too quickly, the tips below will help you to maximize how long hydrangea flowers last in a vase:

  • Pick flowers early in the morning while it’s still a bit cool outside. While picking, place their stems in a bucket of water
  • Cut the stems to be as long as possible
  • Once you’re happy with the number of flowers that you’ve picked, you should recut the stems on a sharp angle on both sides to improve water intake (cut only 2-3 cm)
  • Fill a container with cool water and place hydrangeas in the water (ideally the water should get up to the base of the flower head, but you can even place them on the side) to rehydrate them. Keep them like this for 2-3 hours.
  • Prepare a vase with flower food, make sure the vase is full with water, you want your hydrangeas to have plenty of water
  • When placing hydrangeas into the vase, make sure that foliage from the bottom of the stems are cut off entirely, you don’t want any leaves just the stems immersed in water
  • Replace the water every two days, clean the vase, add plant food, repeat the water immersion procedure, and cut the stems once again at an angle

This is how they make these flowers last so long in flower shops. With this procedure, you can make hydrangea flowers last much longer. I once managed to keep the flowers from wilting for 2 weeks or so.

Wrapping Up

With flowering almost throughout the entire growing season, it’s no wonder why hydrangeas have become as popular as they are.

While flowers may last only a couple of weeks from bud to bloom, you can maximize their longevity with the help of good light exposure, correct watering and a good fertilizer.

Flowers can last long even when displayed in a vase. Follow the procedure I described above and enjoy your hydrangea blooms for longer.

Updated: February 5, 2021

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