U.S.A., Washington State. USDA zone 8b. Sunset climate zone 5

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Green October Hydrangea Bouquets

It's time to cut hydrangea bouquets. 
Some of them will stay in the house, and some will decorate my garden working table through the winter.
Almost all the blue flowers turned green in August.
The majority of the flowers for the bouquets shown below came from the bushes of Nicco Blue which grows in a shady northern border against a wall and in a more sunny back hedge:

What is interesting, is that one of the bushes produced several late blooms which are bright blue.
They look like aliens among dozens of green mop heads.

I believe the flowers that have a purplish hue were cut from an Endless Summer bush.
The whole bush is turning purple right now.
Thus, the Endless Summer plant went from blue to green to purple.
An interesting transformation!

I found some explanation of the green hydrangea heads here: Green Hydrangea Flowers
It is based on the facts that hydrangea blooms are not petals, but sepals.
Here is the abstract from the source:
"There is a cause of green hydrangea blooms. It’s Mother Nature herself with a little help from the French gardeners who hybridized the original hydrangeas from China. You see, those colorful flowers aren’t petals at all. They’re sepals, the part of the flower that protects the flower bud. Why do hydrangeas bloom green? Because that’s the natural color of the sepals. As the sepals age, the pink, blue or white pigments overpower the green so colored hydrangea blossoms often fade to green over time.
Many gardeners believe that color is controlled solely by the availability of aluminum in the soil. Aluminum gives you blue flowers. Bind up the aluminum and you get pink. Right? That’s only part of the story. Those green hydrangea flowers turn color with longer days of light. Light gives those colors the energy to dominate. The color can last for weeks and then you find your hydrangea flowers turning green again. The days are becoming shorter. The blue, pink and white pigments lose energy and fade away. Once again, green hydrangea flowers reign.
But if your hydrangea with green flowers is any of the other types and the blooms refuse to change, you’re the victim of one of Mother Nature’s occasional pranks and horticulturalists have no explanation for the condition. It may be a combination of unusual weather conditions, but no scientific reason has been found. Take heart. Your hydrangea with green flowers should only suffer the condition for a season or two before the plant returns to normal.Sometimes you’ll find a hydrangea with green flowers all season long. If you’re new to the garden or the plant is new to you, and the plant blooms later than its brethren, you might have a variety called “Limelight.” These relatively new plants have much smaller leaves than the big leaf varieties, although their blooms look similar to the mophead hydrangeas. Flowers turning green is natural to this beauty whose blooms begin and end in white but are bred to be green in between those times."

Whatever is the color of your hydrangea, I hope you cut some bouquets and enjoy them!

My garden helper is having a break from his garden duties, and I wish you a restful Sunday!

***Copyright 2014 TatyanaS


  1. Great hydrangea information, Tatyana, and beautiful photographs. I'm looking at my hydrangeas in a whole new light now. P. x

  2. Hydrangea flowers are so beautiful, and your photos of them are lovely! I just got two Hydrangeas, one of them an Endless Summer, for a reworking of my back garden, an area that is more shady than I realized. I just have fallen in love with the colors they turn as they fade.

  3. Your garden helper looks squished in that chair! Ha Ha! My hydrangeas are much smaller at this house (planted this year) than at our last one, but you reminded me to get out there and cut some for the house. Your garden is looking beautiful, as always.

  4. Beautiful photos of your hydrangeas and interesting information, but I love most of all your sleeping grden helper!

  5. I love to pick Hydrangea blooms in autumn! I just did the same thing the other day, but I didn't have as many blooms this year as last year. Enjoy the beauty!

  6. Wow, these are sooo prettty! Your Hydrangeas are doing so great, amazing! I so wish I had more success with the ones in our garden. Think I'll just have to replace them with other plants though, and say goodbye to Hydrangeas altogether. All the work and effort I've already put in them without result is becoming too frustrating. I will instead enjoy posts like yours with numerous gorgeous blooms.

  7. Oh to see more of your blue blooms...and I adore when they turn green...stunning shots.

  8. Beautiful photos, Tatyana! Oh, how I envy you those gorgeous blue blooms; here, I have to add lots of acidic material to get mine to turn anything but pink, and then they usually only make it to lavender:) Interesting information about the color of blooms. I noticed my 'Limelight' this fall is turning slightly pink--I wonder if our wet weather has anything to do with that. Thanks for reminding me I need to pick some blooms to enjoy through the winter!

  9. Very interesting! It is funny how, with all this study, there are still a lot of things that scientists don't know! I love hydrangeas, though, and they look beautiful en masse with all the tinges of blue and pink in the green.

  10. Gorgeous as always and your helper is very handsome! Thanks for the information about why hydrangeas turn green this time of year, it was very interesting.

  11. Beautiful soft, romantic images, and those Hydrangeas are gorgeous, so is your helper.

  12. Tatyana, I have to confess, I only knew part of the story, thanks for the info. Mind you, green or blue, they look magnificent.

  13. Lovely, and informative! I like the green, and have been trying to figure out how I can fit a Limelight hydrangea into my garden. But what really makes me drool is the blue! There are no blue hydrangeas here in central Ohio, but my pink, and now mauve flowers are gorgeous. Love, love, love hydrangeas!

  14. Garden helper and your photos magnificent


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