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Help! Little buds - next year's growth? Will they winter over?

Posted by Earth.Worm 6 (My Page) on
Wed, Oct 16, 13 at 19:45

I got a potted pink hydrangea as a gift in the beginning of August. I never had one at home as a houseplant, so I was clueless when it seemed to be dying after about 1.5 months no matter what I did. Eventually by the beginning of October the poor thing lost not only the flowers, but all the leaves too! I cut off the dry parts and as a last attempt gave it some fertilizer...

Than the buds appeared (on the picture).
Then I found and read this forum.... and realized, that the plant was maybe not dying, but preparing for the winter and now I messed up its timing with the fertilizer...

Could anyone please tell me if that's what's happening with it? Did the green buds sprout because of the food I gave it or are they just the normal buds for next year?

What should I do now - I was originally thinking about replanting it, but the potting soil has fertilizer too, or should I stop watering and let it rest for the winter in the same poor soil it came in? In that case when should I re-pot?
About keeping it over the winter - what I read online was to put the plant in dark and cold and water about once a week till January or February, then bring back inside. Is that correct, should I wrap it in anything and is 50F cold enough? (our basement is not that cold & I have no garage).

Thank you all so much for your advice!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Help! Little buds - next year's growth? Will they winter over

Not sure about zone 6 if planting in the ground now is a good idea but then keeping it inside is probably not going to work either as you've already discovered. Most florist hydrangeas end up on the compost heap but they can be grown in the ground.

I'm in zone 8 and have lost a couple of florist hydrangeas because I tried to keep them happy inside during winter. I now plant any new florist hydrangeas shortly after the bloom period is over and they root and grow like any other hydrangea. I've also had a couple of garden hydrangeas I intentionally kept in the pot outdoors to keep the color pink. Not sure if you can keep them in pots in your zone though?

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