When Do Hydrangeas Bloom? An In-Depth Guide

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Eager for hydrangea blooms? This guide gives a timeline of when some of the most popular hydrangea types begin to flower.

The signature lush mophead flowers or delicate lacecap blooms from hydrangea shrubs are a staple for gardeners across the globe. As we see hydrangeas start their show this season, many gardeners wonder when their hydrangea will bloom. The answer? Well, it depends on the type of hydrangea! Some wait until the end of summer to begin their show, while others are some of the first shrubs to bloom in the spring. Check out our guide below to get answers:

Hydrangea bloom time flowering guide

Why Isn't My Hydrangea Blooming?

Is your hydrangea past its bloom time, and flowers still haven't emerged? There are a few reasons why your hydrangea may not be blooming:

Overwatering

Hydrangeas like evenly moist, well-drained soils, so planting your hydrangeas in poorly drained or waterlogged soil could prevent flowering. Aside from struggling to blossom, waterlogged hydrangeas often develop brown, crisping leaves. If you feel like your hydrangea may be overwatered, let it fully dry out before watering again, and add a layer of soil to prevent root rot. Once the soil is completely dried out, return to a regular watering schedule, ensuring no standing water is around your hydrangeas. It may take some time, but your shrub should bounce back!

Too Much Sun or Shade

Sun exposure—either too much or too little—could cause your lack of blooms. Plants not blooming in shade have been a problem we’ve covered for years. Sunlight is required to set buds, so if your plant receives too little sun, it won’t flower. Your hydrangeas should receive four or more hours of direct sunlight daily for flower production.

On the other hand, hydrangea can be stressed in full-sun environments, especially in hot climates. This stress can cause blooms to be dull in color or stop appearing at all. While hydrangeas can handle full sun in cooler zones, they flower best with morning sun and afternoon shade in hot areas (zones 8+). If you think sun exposure could be the problem, you can always transplant your hydrangea to a new spot in the garden in spring or fall.

Improper Pruning

Accidentally pruning hydrangeas that grow on old wood can be why your hydrangea isn’t blooming. Hydrangeas that bloom on old wood, like oakleaf, cascade, bigleaf, and mountain hydrangea, create their new flower buds shortly after they bloom, meaning the following year’s growth is formed on last year’s old wood. 

If you pruned your old wood hydrangea before it bloomed, there is a good chance you removed this year’s flower buds. Unfortunately, you’ll have to wait another year for new flower buds to form. We recommend you avoid pruning any hydrangea that blooms on old wood altogether. 

Different Types of Hydrangeas For Sale:

Close up image of white hydrangea flowers in a clay pot

Cascade Hydrangea

oakleaf hydrangea with pink cone-shaped blooms

Oakleaf Hydrangea

Close up of incrediball smooth hydrangea with large white blooms

Smooth Hydrangea

Close up of the purple bloom on the Lets Dance Arriba Bigleaf Hydrangea

Bigleaf Hydrangea

Close up of delicate pink hydrangea flowers

Mountain Hydrangea

Close up of the cone shaped green blooms on the Limelight Prime Panicle Hydrangea

Panicle Hydrangea

Have More Questions About Growing Hydrangeas? Check Out Our Q&A Blog:

Written by: Lindsey Griffith, click here to read bio.

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