Pruning Tips for Panicle hydrangeas (or ‘Hardy Hydrangeas’)
Panicle Hydrangeas bloom on new wood, meaning they won’t start creating flower buds until they leaf out each Spring. While pruning is not necessary every year, it will help to encourage stronger stems, more flowers, and a more controllable shape.
When to prune: Late Fall is generally considered the best time to prune paniculata varieties. You can do this once the plant has gone completely dormant (i.e. leaves have fallen and has been bare for at few weeks). You can also wait until early spring, just make sure to do it on the earlier end, just as the new season’s growth begins to emerge. Aim to cut the plant back by about one-third; in other words, if it is 3’ tall, cut off about 1’. You can also remove any thin stems and side branches, which will help your plant by focusing energy elsewhere.
Some popular Panicle Hydrangeas include:
- ‘Limelight’ (pictured right)
- ‘Pinky Winky’
- ‘Quick Fire’ (pictured at top)
- ‘Little Lamb’
Commonly sold Smooth Hydrangeas include:
- ‘Invincibelle Spirit’ (pictured left)
- ‘Bella Anna’
- ‘White Dome’
Simply prune back the shrub to the desired height, making cuts just above where another branch enters the stem.