Bigleaf or French Hydrangea

April 27, 2017 admin

Botanical Name: Hydrangea macrophylla 
Height: 2-3′
Width: 2-3′
Exposure: Part Sun, Shade (Morning Sun)
Performance: Perennial

Gardeners love the bold show of Hydrangea macrophylla. Their larger than life flowers captivate a landscape making it well worth the extra effort they require.
Hydration is essential for a healthy hydrangeaHence the Latin name, ‘Hydra’, which describes the plant’s excessive need for water. The species macrophylla, refers to the large leaves of the plant. This deciduous shrub provides a lush presence in the garden before its leaves drop in winter. Often referred to as “French Hydrangea”, it’s oddly enough a Japanese native, but the French are responsible for the popularity and hybridization of H. macrophylla. 


The pH level of the soil determines the flower’s color. Soil with higher acidity produces blue flowers; while alkaline soils produce bright pink inflorescences. Therefore, lowering and raising the pH level of the soil changes the flower color. Be cautious applying a pH changing solution as the flowers may turn an unattractive color. Dallas/Fort Worth’s soil is more alkaline, so adding aluminum sulfate lowers the pH level to produce a blue flower. On the contrary, in East Texas most soil is acidic, so applying lime in fall will produce a pink flower the following year.

Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Mathilda Gutges’ Blue-Purple
Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Firelight’ Rose
Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Rose Supreme’