Latin pronunciation: (hy-DRAN-jee-uh mak-roh-RIL-uh)
Bell-shaped flower clusters are hydrangea's delight. Getting it to bloom, though, is a challenge.
- LIGHT: Place in low light during dormancy. Place in high light before and during bloom; set in medium light the rest of the year. Place outdoors in summer.
- WATER: Keep barely moist during dormancy. Keep evenly moist rest of year. Never allow soil to dry out during growth and bloom. Mist daily except during dormancy. Prefers higher humidity.
- TEMPERATURE: Store plant at 45 degrees during dormancy. Raise temperature to no more than 55 degrees to encourage new growth, then to 60 degrees when leaves form. During and after bloom, maintain temperatures below 70 degrees during the day and into the low 60s at night.
To create new growth for future flowers, cut the plant back after bloom. Feed and water well as new growth forms. In fall, store in cool (45 degrees), dim area. Leaves will fall. Water just enough to keep soil moist. After Christmas, bring into light and maintain temperatures of no more than 55 degrees. Water normally. Mist stem with tepid water. As leaves form, feed and soak with supplement solution (1 ounce ammonium sulfate and 1 ounce iron sulfate in 2 gallons water). Increase temperature to 60 degrees until bloom. During bloom, never let temperatures exceed 70 degrees. Propagate by tip cuttings in spring.