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Suggestions for BEST antique hydrangea for cutting

Posted by oath5 z6b/7a MD (My Page) on
Wed, Jul 13, 11 at 15:03

Hi all, I'm a big hydrangea fan, but I've never grown too many. I have four Nikko Blue on the side of our porch I planted bout four, five years ago and they've finally I think are hitting the "mature" state, as they aren't as floppy anymore and they're blooming great this year. We have other miscellaneous pink hydrangea planted around that I think we've been given as gifts around Easter and the like, and they turn out rather hardy, least one is big 4 x 4 shrub or so that is always pink and has no color shift.

I just planted and plan to buy more Annabelle hydrangea for cut flowers to sell to make some extra income during the summer/fall. I thought I might as well try some others as well to help make money/make the yard look even nicer. I love antique things, any suggestions of the older varieties that are pretty vigorous/grow and bloom well? I've been looking at the database of what's available from Vintage Gardens and Hydrangea Plus and some other sites for reference, at least what antique ones are available, but I'm getting a bit overwhelmed by the selection, I like them all!

There are two I pass on the road near my house which are the deepest cobalt blue, and I do not think they are 'Nikko' which I'll ask if I can get a cutting from one of these days. Some of the lacecap are interesting, especially the ones that are Japanese.

I keep remembering old mophead hydrangea bushes that have much smaller sepals clustered together than say, 'Nikko Blue' whose are rather large in trusses but but still were pretty large shrubs and of pretty blue/purple/pink. More "antique" or delicate looking, very round flowers. Do you know which one that could be?

I was thinking of'La France' and 'Otaksa' might be a good place to start with and while it's not antique 'Preziosa' also intrigues me, any other reccomendations that are just stunning/unique and also a very good cut flower?


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RE: Suggestions for BEST antique hydrangea for cutting

Oath5,

An oldy-but-goody is the Pee Gee Hydrangea. If you explore old 19th century graveyards, you'll see it was frequently used. The blossoms turn wonderful sepia tones late in the season, that dry easily, and can be brought indoors for decorating until you get tired of them.

Here's an old comment I took from the Sears Henry Heirloom Plant Collection:
"The introduction of the hardy Japan Hydrangea (Hydrangea paniculata grandiflora) in 1874 awakened a new interest in this genus of plants. With its immense panicles of white flowers, The Great-Flowering Hydrangea is a shrub well worthy of a prominent position in every garden. Its flowers appear at a season when few others are in bloom. It is a very free growing shrub, easily propagated, and thrives in all kinds of soils." - Orchard and Garden, A.S. Fuller, Aug. 1888

Here is a link that might be useful: The 1893 Sears Henry Heirloom Plant Collection


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