Was my Hydrangea murdered?

mystro(9a WA)February 26, 2010

I'm a fairly new male gardener who made the mistake of letting a relatively unknown garden cleanup person prune my garden, this idiot cut my beautiful Hydrangea's all the way down to the ground..these were well established plants approx 4 ft tall and quite frankly, were the highlight of the front of my home. Needless to say, I've been in mourning over this all winter.

What can I do to help encourage growth..I'm really fairly lost on what I can add to the soil and help them grow?

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gardengal48

They've not been murdered :-) At worst, you've only lost a season of flowers but even that is not a for sure thing in our climate. The shrubs will regrow and fairly rapidly. I'd just make sure they are well mulched with compost and well watered during our dry summer. Avoid attempting to encourage growth by excess fertilization - that's not how fertilizers work and any growth generated by heavy fertilization is prone to insect and diease problems. The compost is sufficient. And a little patience :-)

And find a new gardener with some better experience and pruning skills!

    Bookmark   February 26, 2010 at 12:10PM
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mystro(9a WA)

Whew..I do feel better after your kind explanation. I'll check the forum for the best fertilizer to use and certainly watch that I don't over do it. Thanks gardengal

    Bookmark   February 27, 2010 at 11:38AM
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gardengal48

Just to clarify my statement.....if you mulch with compost, you do not need to fertilize any further. Compost contains all the nutrients necessary to ensure good healthy growth of the hydrangeas. If you want to adjust coloring, that's a bit different and I'd recommend a light application of ARC fertilizer (Azalea, Rhodo and Camellia, aka 'acid lovers' fertilizer) in spring as new growth emerges, only to encourage blue flowers.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2010 at 10:03AM
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mystro(9a WA)

I'll be visiting our local nurseries with the idea of clearing away some of the stone and packing something around them as you suggested..I didn't know that about the mulch/compost working in place of fertilizer. thanks

    Bookmark   February 28, 2010 at 8:26PM
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