How to Identify Hydrangeas


Wondering which kind of hydrangea you have?
In my garden, the color and shape of the faded bloom helps me identify hydrangeas.
Common Hydrangea macrophylla flower heads are dark tan, usually globe-like, and on the tip of stiff stems. If the brown flowers are lace-cap type, it is almost certainly a macrophylla hydrangea.
'Annabelle' hydrangea blooms are a very light tan, almost white and on the end of three-foot long arching canes.
'PeeGee' hydrangea flowers look like Hydrangea macrophylla blooms but the shrub itself is much bigger...usually 5 – 10 feet tall. Stems are very stiff and arch gently at the top.
'Tardiva' hydrangea flowers are strongly cone-shaped but the leaves are not oak-shaped. 'Tardiva' blooms in mid- to late summer, after oakleaf hydrangea.
Oakleaf hydrangea also has cone-shaped flowers but the bark of the stems peels attractively around the bottom third of the stem.
PeeGee hydrangea
mophead hydrangea
lacecap hydrangea
Annabelle hydrangea
oakleaf hydrangea

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  • VALERIE
    on Sep 2, 2013

    Thank you for this post@Walter Reeves

  • Theresa Jacobsen
    on Jan 3, 2014

    Just because it looks like an Annabelle Hydrangea, doesn't mean it is one, Sister Theresa Hydrangea's look the same but bigger and whiter! Very similar

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