How Do You Trim a Hydrangea Bush, A Complete Guide

how do you trim a hydrangea bush
Hydrangea flowers are a stunning and appealing addition to your garden flower collection. Although the flower’s outlook seems perfect for spring and summer flower groups, good care can yield these flowers in even winter and fall. The basic care demands right information of How Do You Trim a Hydrangea Bush?. Also, they are very easy to grow, and rapid growth also helps decorate the garden quickly.

Now get your gloves and other gardening tools ready as you will read a complete guide about the hydrangeas and maintain a good appearance.

How Do You Trim a Hydrangea Bush
how do you trim a hydrangea bush?

What is the hydrangea flower?

Hydrangeas are common shrub and mostly blossom in summer and spring. However, they extend the time limit from both ends and show up for a much longer than estimation. The most beautiful part of growing hydrangeas is that you don’t need that gardening expertise to grow these lovely flowers. They grow on their own, and general care and precautions are needed to get the best results. You might end up damaging the plant if you don’t know precisely How Do You Trim a Hydrangea Bush?”

Besides, they grow quickly and reach almost 15 feet in height. With proper care and maintenance, they can fill up your garden in just one summer. You can add these plants as a foundation plant in your garden to built a landscape as it may starts from spring and last till early fall.

How to plant hydrangea?

Pre-planning is the best way to achieve the goal in the least time with almost zero failure. Therefore before planting the hydrangea, make a short plan about the place, type of soil needed, and time.

Perfect time to plant:

Although hydrangea is a friendly shrub and shows up almost all year long, fall is the best Season for baby plants. The reason to choose fall is to give a baby plant enough time to establish a new and healthy plant.  The timing and tools should be accurate to get the best yield of hydrangeas. Anyhow if the yield is not up to mark then it’s time to evaluate your information regarding How Do You Trim a Hydrangea Bush?” While in other seasons, it has to go through instant changes and rapid growth; therefore, it can strengthen its roots in fall. According to time, the best time is early morning and late afternoon. The average cold environment protects the small plant from the harsh heat.

Appropriate location:

One must be aware of climatic zones and enough information about How Do You Trim a Hydrangea Bush?
While choosing the right place, make sure to keep the plant in warm but shady places. Young hydrangeas are at risk of dehydration when kept in direct sunlight in the afternoon. Therefore mostly gardener keeps it next to the home side to avoid direct exposure. Although they like the warm and shady place, keeping the plant under the tree is not a good idea. It will create a competition for water and other nutrients, and hydrangeas as a baby plant will wither and die eventually.

Type of soil:

Indeed a rich soil is always the most basic need of all plants. However, hydrangea needs a good supply of water at initial stages and with good drainage. Although they demand well-hydrated soil, overly water logging is not a good idea. Keep a good quality soil with an appropriate watering level.

Procedure to plant:

  • You might need a perfect (1)kit of gardening tools for planting innovatively.
  • Dig a hole of 2 feet wider than the root ball.
  • Keep the plant in the soil a little higher than the surroundings.
  • A small mound will help in better water drainage.

Propagation technique:

Just one hydrangea can propagate into many others with a simple technique in mid-summer. All you have to do is:

Dig a small area near the already grown hydrangea plant.
Softly bend the lowest branch until it reaches the ground from the middle point.

Now scratch gently at the point touching the soil.
Finally, please fill-up the soil and place a small stone or brick to keep it in the soil.

Afterwards, it will regenerate roots from the stem into the soil and hold a new location as a free plant.

Which Season is perfect?

Gardening timing plays a vital role after the quality of the soil. Therefore, to get the maximum and elongate blooming, Season makes sure to plant it in Season’s right. Usually, hydrangeas get their buds in early summer and bloom in the spring to early fall. However, in the places where the climate is higher than average, it might stop blooming in mid-summer. Also, in a few places, it reblooms in early fall.

How Do You Trim a Hydrangea Bush Complete Guide?

Even an expert in gardening needs to know the right way of taking care of plants; therefore, I will explain the suitable method of “How Do You Trim a Hydrangea Bush?”

Kinds of hydrangeas and pruning tips:

Hydrangea is a title to a group of a shrub that has almost 70-75 species under this group. Hence the list is quite long. We will guide you about the most common garden hydrangeas.
Hydrangeas need to be pruned according to Season for better and rich growth. However, if not pruned properly might result in a plant’s death or shortening of the blooming period.

1. Pruning an oak leaf hydrangea:

The similarity in the leaf shape is the origin of the name of hydrangea. The leaf size varies from 4×4 inches to 10 x10 inches long. Oakleaf hydrangeas have unique behaviour of changing colour from orange to red in the fall season.

Best time to prune: Oakleaf hydrangea doesn’t require a lot of pruning, but trim in a year helps groom the plant’s look. Oakleaf hydrangeas continue to bloom on the last Season’s growth, so it’s recommended to prune it in early winter or after flowering in the fall. However, make sure to take less than 1/3 of the growth and leave the part to blossom in the next Season. It’s a fact that pruning is vital for hydrangeas, but for this kind, least pruning or just a trim is more than enough.

2. Pruning dwarf hydrangeas:

Dwarf hydrangeas mostly bloom on old wood. They belong to big leaf hydrangeas such as Cultivar “Pia.” The growing zones of these hydrangeas are 5 to 9. French hydrangeas Cluster of impressive flowers looks like a pyramid does not need regular pruning. Just a light trim is enough. Mainly the pruning provides fundamental reshaping and grooming the shrub.

Best Season to prune:

The right time to prune dwarf hydrangea is different for different species of shrub. Usually, these hydrangeas grow on old wood, so you can prune it right after flowers fade away. Mostly Mid-July or August is the right time for removing the deadheads and wilted flowers to enhance the plant look.

3. When to trim lace cap hydrangeas:

Small delicate flowers like a fine lace make a rim around the big flat flowers. They have quite a resemblance to mophead hydrangea. The lace heads need both sunny and shady locations with a well-drained system. The perfect structure for the shrub is part morning sun and afternoon shade. Although Lace cap hydrangea does not need extra care and regular trimming, regular hydration and irrigation are critical.

Best time to prune:

Immediately after, the plant ends the flowering session and should be trimmed to lower buds. After the deadheading, your plant will survive all summer long. However, to control the plant’s size, you have to cut it up to ½ of each stem. Hydrangea lace caps research shows that it can tolerate intensive pruning and results in better and rich flowers afterwards.

4. Panicle/cone hydrangea pruning:

The name of the species is on the shape of hydrangea that is panicle-shaped or cone-shaped. At bloom time, the colour is creamy white, and as they age, they take a pinkish tinge. Later in the season, the flowers will dry on the plant and keep hanging throughout the winter. However, if you don’t like the look, you can prune out the browned flowers; otherwise, they are harmless.

Best time to prune:

The cone hydrangeas have high climate tolerance and can survive in a variety of climates. They are among the few hydrangeas that can bloom in colder climates of zone 3. Usually, they have grown on new wood; therefore, it’s easy to prune these throughout the year. The only exception is summer as they blossom fully in summer, which will result in losing flowers.

The most preferred time of the year is late winter as it has the least density of flowers and makes it easy to reach the base branches. Always trim the oldest branches of thumb size and do not cut deep down uselessly.

When to prune limelight hydrangea bushes:

Limelight hydrangea is a landscape plant that fills up the area with green shades. Consequently, the limelight is only a shrub that enhances the green shades of a garden. The shrub does not change colour with soil changes, but when the flower is mature enough, it takes shades of pink, red, and burgundy with a bronze hue.

They can reach 6-8 feet height and spread in reliable green blooms throughout the growing zones. Their survival zones extend from 3 to 9 and are well tolerated in harsh seasons.
Best time to prune:
They bloom on new stems that grow every year. Therefore you should prune it in late winter or early spring. It would help the plant to flourish in spring, and in summer, you will get blooms of limelight hydrangea with groomed shape.

5. How to prune macrophylla hydrangeas:

Macrophylla is big leaf hydrangeas and has distinct flower colours. The soil’s pH level determines the flowers’ colour, such as blue in acidic soil, while in alkaline soil, the colour is pink. So here, you can easily change the pH of any soil using an acidifier like this one.
You should also have a testing system to determine the nature of soil before planting a shrub.

Best time to prune:

usually, they grow on last year’s growth on old wood, so it’s not advised to prune them in spring. It will reduce the flowers or won’t grow at all. However, for maximum results, you should prune it in late summer once the flowers fade. As it will give the shrub time to revitalizes for the new Season.

Gardner Tip for pruning: Make sure to prune all kinds of hydrangeas and other species with clean and sharp pruners. You can easily choose one from online purchasing. I would recommend this one as I find it useful and budget-friendly.

How to maintain plants according to seasons?

Bigleaf hydrangeas must have various light fertilizer applications in March, May, and June.

Oakleaf and panicle hydrangeas set the show with only two applications of specialized fertilizer in April and June.
Smooth hydrangea plants are very basic and only need fertilization in late winter or early fall.
You can find the best fertilizer from amazon.

How to prune after flowering?

Already we mentioned the time and perfect seasons to prune specific kind of hydrangea. Moreover, the perfect technique and the right tool will spike up the results without damaging the shrub’s flowering session. Most hydrangeas do not need keen attention, but living plants need the same care and love. Either you trim or deadhead plant, make sure to use the appropriate method and timing.


In this method, the dead flowers are removed with plucking tools or cutters.

Be careful to cut the stem deep as it will affect their next session growth. Moreover, it’s not recommended for all hydrangeas, and it’s better to leave the wilted flowers on the shrub. Leaving faded flowers attached to stems means providing shelter to new baby buds from the harsh environment.

Pruning/cutting stems. It’s better to cut the oldest stems on the plant’s base and let the new healthy stems emerge with enhanced potential. However, the neglected or unattended plant also needs renovation via this method.

Pot care and tips:

Plants can feel the care and love and react to it in their specific way. The more you took care of them, and they will flourish and bloom for an extended period. Besides, you need to fulfil their basic needs in an appropriate pattern and method to get the finest result. Although hydrangeas are friendly and easy-going shrub, few necessities are not exempted for them to flourish.

Here you are going to read a few must-follow tips and care routines for hydrangea’s pots.

Pot selection:

Hydrangeas are not fully indoor plants, and thus, choosing a small pot is never the right choice. Hydrangeas are water and sun-loving plant so must choose speciously and container with proper drainage holes. You can visit the site to get the appropriate one.

Add Mulch:

Beneath the hydrangea, place mulch that keeps the soil cool and moist. With time it breaks into compounds and improves the soil nutrient level and texture.


According to the demand of each kind of hydrangea, fertilize the plant at the right time and get the maximum yield.

Pest and disease Protection:

Hydrangea is often attacked with pests and needs special protection. The pests include aphids, red spider mites, and leaf tiers to avoid them, and you need to occasionally spray pest control.


What is the best time to trim hydrangeas?

There two simple times for the pruning.

Spring bloomers should be pruned in fall, keep the strong buds and prune the deadwood and weaker stems.

Fall bloomers: While in this case, prune in early spring or late winter. It’s more likely to pluck the flowering part and leave the remaining stem and branches. Consequently, a new generation will blossom on the same old wood.

How to remove dead flowers from the plant?

Removing flowers is known as deadheading. Cut the flower stem just beneath the faded flower with a sharp cutter or pruner. However, deadhead the one with a set of healthy leaf. Moreover, shearing the whole plant is also a good way to remove the dead flowers.

What hydrangeas bloom on old wood?

Endless summer kinds grow both on old and new wood. Besides, smooth hydrangeas prefer new wood and need typical pruning. However, the “old wood “contains the blooms of last year’s growth and open next summer. Therefore winter and spring is the right time to prune these kinds. Bigleaf is among one of them.

How Do You Trim a Hydrangea Bush
How To pruning hydrangeas after flowering or in Summer

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