I have 8 hydrangeas in my garden, all on the same side of the house, facing east. About 3 of them didn't flower this year, and was worse, 5 of them have brown spots on their leaves. How can I remedy this? I live near the southern coast of Long Island, NY and I'm getting ready to cut all the plants for the winter.
It sounds like you may have a fungus. This is a common cause of spots on leaves. I would recommend treating the plants with a fungicide and destroying anything you prune from them so the fungus does not have anywhere to overwinter.
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I have faced a similar problem with my hydrangeas. I have 6 facing south. And they also felt very bad this year.
I understand I must cut back old wood from bottom of plant before winter sets in and. . . . . . . . . I want to be sure I can tell the difference between the old wood and new wood, one year I cut them back and it took two years before I had any blooms on the plants. Naturally, I do not want a repeat of that error. I will appreciate your help.
If you are hesitant, you can wait till early spring to cut back the plant. At that time, the new wood will be green in color, while the old wood will be brown. You can use this rule of thumb for fall/winter pruning too, but it is much more obvious in the spring.
I want to do some experimenting on changing hydrangea colour. If the tree is already grown, can i still change the colour of the flower?
Yes, you can change the color at any time. This article will help with how to do that: https://www.gardeningknowhow.ca/ornamental/shrubs/hydrangea/change-hydrangea-color.htm
It normally takes about a season to change the color.
I forgot to cover my hydrangeas before a soft freeze. The plants look awful. Have I killed them or can I cut them back (similar to the lantana) so they can possibly re-grow after the winter?
As long as the stems are still green, it should recover. I would not trim it back yet, the leaves may regrow where the old ones died back. Give it a week or two and see if you see leaf buds forming before pruning it back. That being said, you may not get blossoms this year as the frost may have killed the buds.
I have 2 new tree hydrangeas in my backyard, planted this fall, about 5. 5-feet high presently. We had a snowstorm this week, and the weight of snow and ice on the dead flowers that had yet to fall off caused a large limb to nearly snap. The top of the limb was resting on the ground, but the limb was still attached to the tree by just a bit more than bark. The split is at the point where the main trunk branches out into 4 or 5 limbs. I'm currently holding it back in position with athletic tape. Any chance it survives? Is there a better way to increase my chances? I planted thetwo close together on my back lot line for some privacy, and they're about the same size. I'll be really bummed if it can't be repaired, as it makes one much smaller/less full than the other.
It probably cannot be repaired, but the steps you have taken are what you can do to at least give it a chance. Don't write them off yet as not being able to achieve the same size. They can fill in rapidly, so in a year or so, the size difference may not even be noticeable.
My very young Hydrangea seems to be growing well enough, but the leaves are turning purple. I've located information that indicates this is a fungus, but can't find anything that tells me what to do. I live in South Alabama, so the weather is mild, seldom getting to freezing and usually sunny and in the mid 40's-50's in the afternoons of winter.
Have the soil tested. It may be a phosphorous deficiency. Purple leaves are a sign for this deficiency. Regardless, adding a little phosphorous will not hurt the plant and will help with blooming. Here is more information: https://www.gardeningknowhow.ca/garden-how-to/soil-fertilizers/phosphorus-plant-growth.htm
I think the fungus you are referring to typically shows itself as purple spots, rather than whole leaves turning purple. But, if you are still concerned that it is a fungus, treating the plant with a fungicide will not harm it. You can buy fungicides at your local plant nursery.
We had four nights of mid 20's temperatures. Now my hydrangeas are brown, both stems and leaves. Should I prune them to the ground? They are about 3 feet tall now. Not sure what to do.
I would not prune them right now. Most hydrangeas bloom on old growth, so if you prune, you will lose the blooms next year. They will regrow their leaves when spring comes, as long as the stems are alive. I would wait until spring and once you see what stems have died, you can trim them away.