Monday, 26 July 2010

Heavenly hydrangeas

I used to have a 'take them or leave them' attitude towards Hydrangeas - I thought they were a bit suburban and unimaginative plants. I then went through a phase of hating them due to a rather nasty still life watercolour painting art exam in which a blue hydrangea was the subject, it took me hours and even then it didn't look as though I had spent hours on it. However, in the last few years, I have begun to discover just what beautiful plants they are. It began with Hydrangea Arborescens 'Annabelle', above, which is a woodland plant with amazing huge white flowers. (They are easy to look after, as long as they get plenty of water - 'Annabelle' is very quick to wilt if it dries out.)

I was then intrigued by Hydrangea paniculata 'Vanille Fraise' which has white flowers initially, maturing to shades of pink.

And finally, the one above is a bargain plant from a cut-price supermarket - I don't know the type of Hydrangea, but it has a very pretty pink/purple flower which is fading through lime green to beige. I also recently bought two new American varieties which are supposed to be easy to prune and really hardy. I shall see how they do - so far, they are putting out lots of leaves. Yes, I think I am a Hydrangea convert. Now, if I could just have that half acre of garden, just think what I could do!

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