Is there a 'right' time to deadhead flowers?

rjingaSeptember 14, 2008

I have 2 hydrangeas one on each side of my walkway to the front door. At this time it appears that one of them (the blue one) has more than one stage of growth on it. the other looks tired.

I have 2 things in mind. One I"d like to save the flower heads for a project. Two, I'd like to try my hand at propogating them. If timing is important for either of these activities, I'd like to know.

I'll tell you that #2 is of far more interest than #1 listed above :) Can I accomplish both at the same time?

NOW:

EARLIER THIS SPRING/SUMMER

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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

You can deadhead at any time. It is pruning should not be done starting in August-September. For information on drying hydrangeas, check the link below. The closer you are to fall, the better but this varies geographically somewhat. If the blooms feel paper-y like, they are ready to be used for cut flower arrangements.

Here is a link that might be useful: Drying Blooms

    Bookmark   September 14, 2008 at 10:41AM
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rjinga

will cutting these faded flower heads off NOW, help or encourage any new blooms? We still have a good bit of warm weather ahead. And if I do cut these faded flowers off, can I just simply cut a bit more and use those cuttings (minus the flowers of course) to try to root? Or would this be more along the lines of actual pruning to get enough plant cuttings for rooting.

In other words, if I cut some back now, will it do anything to enhance or hinder the plant?

    Bookmark   September 14, 2008 at 4:28PM
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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

You can encourage new blooms via deadheading (removal of the spent flowers) only if your variety is remontant (blooms more than once). Exampes of remontant macrophyllas are the Endless Summer Series, Forever & Ever Series, etc. Other varieties like Nikko Blue, etc will not rebloom if you deadhead.

Regarding pruning/cutting back...

Non-remontant macrophyllas bloom once per growing season. Period. Prune a stem after the flower buds have developed and the stem will not flower in the next growing season (Year 2009) at all. You would see blooms in Spring 2010.

Remontant macrophyllas are a different story. They bloom in the Fall but they also bloom in late Spring and summer. In the north, remontant hydrangeas will bloom twice; three times if you are lucky. In the southern states, remontant macrophyllas may have 3 blooming seasons although... that is never written in stone. If you prune one of their stems now, the stem will not bloom in mid-to-late Spring 2009 but it will bloom in the summer 2009 or close to Fall 2009.

Does this help?
Luis

    Bookmark   September 14, 2008 at 6:53PM
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