Hydrangea Annabelle - Will it grow in Florida?

love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)September 11, 2009

I fell in love with Hydrangea Annabelle when I was in Michigan in August. They were GORGEOUS! The giant white mopheads are just beautiful! Will they grow in Florida? Or is it just too darn hot here? How about if it is planted in shade? Or does it require sun to bloom?

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love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)

How about Incrediball Hydrangea? Anyone have experience with it in Zone 9?

Here is a link that might be useful: Fabulous and Foolproof: Incrediball

    Bookmark   September 11, 2009 at 1:24PM
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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

It may be difficult as they like some cold. We had a member, yellowgirl, who was trying to grow Annabelles in the Orlando area. She had mentioned that it was difficult due to the sandy soil requiring lots of water and due to the heat. She has been 'incomunicada' for some time and am not sure how to contact her. If you wish to try, post often and keep us updated of your progress.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2009 at 4:13PM
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ostrich(3a AB)

I think that Annabelle is one of these few things that do better in a northern climate than the hot, hot, hot climate like Florida! :-)

    Bookmark   September 20, 2009 at 9:09PM
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The USDA plant database shows it as native to Florida, but I suspect it is best for Northern Florida. It would be great to get first had experience from people in Florida to see how far south it can go.

Here is a link that might be useful: USDA Native Range map

    Bookmark   October 13, 2009 at 9:44AM
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love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)

Is that link for the specific variety Annabelle? Or just general hydrangeas? I don't have any trouble at all growing Nikko and some of the other run-of-the-mill varieties. They do fine in north Florida if planted on the north side of the house or in shade. They get fried in the hot sun. But I am still interested to know if anyone has had success with Annabelle or Incrediball in Florida?

Here are my regular old Hydrangeas:

    Bookmark   October 13, 2009 at 10:11AM
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Shelly K.(9)

I bought an Annabelle in Illinois and brought it down to Fort Lauderdale in the spring. I planted it in a huge pot, gave it Hydrangea food, and put it on my patio where it is mostly in the shade. This summer it bloomed beautifully! Now, in August, it is starting to go into what we would call hibernation for these plants, up north. The flowers have greened and some of the leaves are dying.
Unless someone else has a suggestion for care during a Florida winter regarding these plants. I am going to leave it where it is, feed it, and see what happens.
I just wanted to say that they DO grow even as far south as here, if you work at it.
I too miss things from up north (lilacs, cherry blossom trees, etc.). I may try my hand at potting a small lilac bush down here. I love attempting the somewhat impossible. The garden center I buy from gives you a year to return a plant if it dies, which leaves room for error.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2014 at 9:57AM
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Shelly K.(9)

This is a follow up photo of my Hydrangeas as of August 6, 2014. Seemingly normal for the Midwest. We'll see what happens down in South Fla.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2014 at 10:02AM
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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

Keep an eye on the water department as I would think it is too early for them to go dormant in FL. Seeing leaves browning out this early made me think about soil moisture problems. Maybe someone else in FL will chime in about when theirs go dormant.

My shrubs down here go dormant in November or December so I expected yours to go dormant after mine do.

So, don't forget to water it during the fall and in winter (once a week or once every two weeks). Mulch it too so the water does not quickly evaporate. A low nitrogen fertilizer now and then might be needed to replace the minerals that leech away due to all the watering. After all, the roots remain growing while the part above the soil takes a winter break.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2014 at 10:54AM
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Shelly K.(9)

Here is another update for my Anbabelle's as of March 30, 2015.

I did as suggested and fertilized her with Hydrangea fertilizer and watered her throughout the winter.

I had cut off the dead balls by December and during the winter the leaves slowly died off.

I finally cut down the dead leaves and branches in January and keot watering, hoping for the best.

About 3 weeks ago, I started seeing small sprouts of leaves growing.

I continued to water once a week or so and moved her into the sun. (South Florida has been unseasonably cold this winter).

So this photo (attached) is what she looks like today.

I am so thrilled.

She made it through and looks very healthy.

I will continue the upkeep, watch for bugs on her, fertilize again within the month, and hopefully see the beautiful blooms again.

I do have a question though, if anyone knows.

Will growing her in a pot (obviously a very large one), harm the shrub in any way, or will it just sort of confine how large she will grow to?

Can you grow a shrub in a pot?

Thanks for the help!


    Bookmark   13 hours ago
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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

Yes, they can be grown in a pot successfully although they will need frequent waterings and somewhat frequent fertilizing & amending since the waterings will leech the minerals down below. If you go on vacation, see if someone will water it for you on the same schedule and the same amt of water. Ditto for fertilizers and amendments.

1 Like    Bookmark   9 hours ago
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