Opinions on shotting star hydrangea

tropical_thought(San Francisco)July 13, 2012

I was thinking of getting shotting star when I saw it at a grocery store, but it was half dead, due to difficult conditions in a grocery store. If I see one at a nursery how well do they grow? I had a lace cap once, but it was variegated, and had a virius, so I has to get rid of it.

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Shooting Star is the trademarked name of 'Hanabi' (aka Fireworks, Fuji Waterfall), a lacecap with delicate, pointy, sterile white flowers held of long pedicels, providing a dangling effect, and surrounding pale blue or pink fertile flowers. Grows as well as any other macrophylla although a more compact plant than most. And best in at least afternoon shade.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2012 at 3:42PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

I did find one at a nursery, but it also looked like it was on it's last legs. If I see a healthy one, I would buy and test it out. But, there is no point in buying a dying plant and attempting to bring it back. They should pay me to take it off their hands. This makes me think they are not that hardy. I am in zone 10 by the way, so cold is not a problem here. Maybe they don't like being potted. I wish I could get one fresh from the dealer, but he won't do individual sales. If I could get one before it sits in a grocery store for a few weeks, it might work.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 12:56PM
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It is no less hardy than any other lace cap macrophylla, although most greenhouse grown hydrangeas (ie. grocery store hydranges) do need some acclimation before you can transition them to the outdoor landscape. Hydrangeas are just not indoor plants and potted hydrangeas at the grocery store are not in ideal conditions and never get the best of care. Shooting Star (under whatever name) is one of the more popular of the florist/greenhouse hydrangeas typically available at grocery stores and Trader Joe's.

If you are looking for a similar flower form on a very tough plant, hunt down Hydrangea paniculata Great Star ('Le Vasterival').

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 1:32PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

But, is it prone to viruses? I had a great looking varicolored lace cap, but it got a virus after two years of doing well. If the virus could be still in my soil, I don't know if I should do this at all.

Here is a link that might be useful: my lace cap

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 2:58PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

This year I bought one, but it was a disaster. I want to warn people about these ones from from half moon bay they sell at whole foods. They had two plants in one tiny pot, I don't know if I can make this live. I put them each in a separate pot with al's gritty mix, and it can't go outside in this cold. If I can make this live it will be greatest achievement of advantage hydrangea saving ever accomplished. I only bought it since they were very fresh as this is 2012 crop. If you buy one that has aged in the store it will be that much harder to save.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2012 at 1:19PM
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I, too, was under the spell of the beauty of the Shooting Star hydrangea (also from Half Moon Bay) when I passed it in the grocery store. Of course, I walked out with 2 pots of them. The pots were tiny, but healthy. When they were finished with their spectacular bloom, I planted them in the shade outside, not expecting much, but, thought, why not? Guess what? 2 years later, it's a gorgeous, knee-high, lush, landscape size plant. And I'm in a colder zone! And believe me, I did NOTHING special for them - it's survival of the fittest in my garden - they don't even get fertilizer - just water from my hose & sunlight. My one caveat is that I'd recommend starting with a healthy plant. The blooms this summer were unbelieveably beautiful - even better than the first year from the florist. Worth a shot, in my humble opinion.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2013 at 12:26AM
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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

You can still get some good values sometimes with plants that look distressed. I have bought quite a few plants at Lowe's 50-75% Off stacks thru the years. Unfortunately, nairy a hydrangea.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2013 at 10:51AM
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I bought this one several years ago from Hydrange Plus for a mostly shady spot in my back yard. The blooms are beautiful, long lasting, begin as white, and gradually turn a very pale blue. Although it generally blooms early, mine bloomed twice last year. The second time, it produced one very large flowerhead in August. Love this hydrangea!

    Bookmark   March 23, 2013 at 10:27AM
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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

I have a pair of unknown old wood mopheads that came with the house and they will randomly bloom in the Fall, not often... but often enough that I am always left wondering if they will. Say once every 3-5 years. Temperature ups and downs may trick them into blooming and I sure enjoy getting those extra blooms. I may just get zero, one or two blooms (max) per large plant but still!!!

However, all this probably comes at the expense of Spring bloomage so I do not mind if there are no reblooms from these shrubs in the Fall.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2013 at 4:00PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

It could be pruning. Mop heads often bloom on old wood so if you prune you can cut off the old wood. Just remove dead flowers with out cutting off too much wood. New wood won't have flowers until it becomes old wood in one full year.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2013 at 5:39PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

But, I don't think I can have any blooms at all this year, as they were so messed up by the way they were cut in half and stuck in peat and the root ball was so very small. But next year I am thinking I will get a bloom maybe.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2013 at 8:36PM
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I have had mine for four years and its the only hydrangea that refuses to bloom. I almost tossed it this year but opted to move it to a more protected location under the canopy of a big evergreen instead. If it doesn,t bloom next year its out of here.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2013 at 12:40PM
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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

How odd, madeyna. There are many reasons for failures to bloom and they center around whether or not the plant produced flower buds or not. Did your plant produce flower buds? The flower buds are invisible at first. If your plant produced flower buds in the Spring, you should have seen the buds forming what looks like broccoli heads. See the two "broccoli heads" in my Shooting Star below:

    Bookmark   April 4, 2013 at 3:38PM
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you are way ahead of me in Va-buds have opened and waiting for warm weather next week

    Bookmark   April 6, 2013 at 1:33PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

They were doing so well. I had the two of them because they cut them into parts to put them in these little pots to sell them, and yesterday they looks so perfect. Had flowers looks like Christmas, but last night they froze up and now look dead. What treatments should I do or just hope they will go dormant and come back? I had the waiting part. It was not easy to get them to work at all. I could buy more of them, but the getting it to transplant from those little pots is very difficult.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2013 at 5:01PM
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Plant should be fine but not sure about next year's blooms. I bought one as a florist hydrangea 2 years ago and kept it indoors through winter - it died. Bought a new one last year and after it finished blooming it went in the ground. Now it is at least 3 times as big and bloomed nicely this year.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2013 at 8:13PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

That is a nice picture. I should have taken one of mine. It was a huge pain to save them. I had to buy expensive Al's gritty mix and then repot and I would put them outside during the day to sun and take inside at night all winter and I planted it March, after leaving them out in the pots for a while. That peat moss that come in drowns the roots, so the roots become very sickly. You can tell by the off color of the roots, that the root is over wet. Just sometimes I have had them die, due to sudden cold. If they have a chance to go dormant, they come back, but sometimes if they get hit with color while not dormant, they don't come back. My climate is very difficult for things that like a real cold winter.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2013 at 9:46PM
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Yes, S.F. does have some very strange weather. Was there 3 years ago for a begonia convention in mid-August. Had to wear a jacket and jeans the entire time which felt really strange. Not sure what this does to hydrangeas.

Was there many years ago for work at the end of March. Quite chilly - mid 50's, maybe high 40's. Glad I knew to take a jacket from a previous trip to Monterey (was there for a seminar at the end of May). Anyway came back to Atlanta April 2nd (Good Friday) and it was 85. We turned on the AC for the first time in April. BRRR!

    Bookmark   December 6, 2013 at 7:51AM
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