Hydrangea season is in full swing. I have, over the last 15 years, been ‘collecting’ hydrangeas and devising many ways to display them in a garden setting. They bloom a very long time and even when they pass their ‘prime’ they are still very effective; in fact I love them more when they are faded. They truly carry the southern garden throughout the summer months.
H. macrophylla ‘Westfalen” above…
Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Jogasaki’
Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Mme Emile Mouillere’, turning pale blue above..
Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’ in the garden with companion Kerriajaponica ‘Picta’ above..
The path leading to “The Circle of Friends” in my garden this morning … above
Hydrangea Season is perhaps my favorite time of year. It signals the beginning of summer and triggers memories of summers past to be savored in the peace of the garden.
Long before it was “The Mourning Bench” this area was ‘The Morning Garden’. Here, in the shade of a dogwood, with variegated Boxwoods on either side, I would bring my mug of coffee and notebook to plan the gardening day.
Originally, the bench was surrounded by hydrangeas, struck from cuttings, of the bouquets brought to me by Penny McHenry* on the occasion of my daughter’s wedding. I imagined sitting there embraced by all those hydrangeas and reveling in the happy memories of that time shared with family members and good friends.
Unfortunately, this site was windswept in the winter. Year after year the hydrangeas would die back to the ground. Although they produced luscious foliage every year, there were no flowers. A change needed to be made. I swapped them out for other hydrangeas… ‘Annabelles’ (Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’), these bloom on new wood (i.e. this years growth) so they were perfect for this area. The wedding hydrangeas were moved to a more protected space.
(For names of the hydrangeas in this post, hover over photo with mouse.)