Pinky Winky and Vanilla Strawberry question

dublinbay z6 (KS)August 8, 2010

I'm just wondering about the growth characteristics of these two plants since they are the first panculatas I've ever planted.

Both arrived in spring as a couple sticks with roots. They have grown fine and have 5-7 blooms each (though no pink color). They are about 2-2.5 ft tall, other than that one cane that suddenly took off to about 3.5 ft. However, what I notice is that basically both have one "stem" emerging from the ground, and all the rest of the growth is "branches" growing off that one "stem" starting a couple inches above the soil line.

I don't know the correct words for what I'm describing--maybe this not-so-good pic of Vanilla Strawberry can help you see what I mean.

Do these panculatas grow kinda like a tree, with one central stem and lots of branches off that stem? Or will more stems emerge with time, each with their own branches?

They are lovely, healthy little critters already--just anticipating how they might look in another year with much more growth and (hopefully) pink-white flowers.


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I think you may have gotten young cuttings that just haven,t had the chance to send up more stems yet. I am so jealous you already have blooms . I have very full healthy plants with no sighns of any flowers yet.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 1:07PM
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whaas_5a(5A SE WI)

Yes the plant will continue to send up shoots especially as you prune. It could take some time thought they don't behave like annabelles or macs.

madeyna, if you don't have blooms something is wrong. My Tardiva, which flowers later than most Paniculatas, has been blooming for a couple weeks.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 2:29PM
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The Pinky will get quite large and is a very upright grower.

The Vanilla I just got this year in a 5 gallon pot and is supposed to be a couple feet smaller than the Limelight. One of the main reasons it appealed to me. The buds were very upright until lately in full bloom. Defentily flopped. I read a 5 year study on many Paniculuta Hydrangeas. Both of these were included in it. They tried many different pruning techniques to both across the years. The Pinky likes a medium to hard prune and the Vanilla likes only a light pruning or it will flop. I enjoy hard pruning my Limelights for the extra large blooms and did not learn this about the Vanilla Strawberry until after I purchased it.

Here is a picture right after I bought the Vanilla.

Here is a promo pic of the Vanilla. Notice you can not see their hands. Because they are holding up the blooms...LOL...

Here is some pics of it recently

Here is a pic of my Pinky Winky

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 2:50PM
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Hmm just planted Vanilla strawberry last month and it is getting ready to bloom. Atleast 3-4 feet tall and not flopping yet. When you say "lightly prune" what do you mean and I assume you would do it in late winter?

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 5:07PM
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Remove spent flowers and form into desired shape. It is still going to flop no matter what. Just you do not want it laying on the ground. You want strong lower branches that will support the new growth and flowers. Sort of acts like a Pee Gee, but not quite as bad.

Yea prune anytime from late Fall to Early Spring. I wait until Spring so I can enjoy the dried flowers through winter.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 7:16PM
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Lilyfinch z7 mid tn

Ugh i need to get a vanilla strawberry so bad! I almost cant stand that i havent found any anywhere. Great pictures!

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 8:33PM
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I have Vanilla Strawberry and it doesn't flop when it matures. The branches thicken up over time and are more than strong enough to hold the flowers. Here are some young ones holding their flowers just fine. Nobody is standing there holding these up at all. Remove those lower branches and allow the stronger ones to remain and you'll have a nice, sturdy plant in one season.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 12:24PM
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