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These Hydrangea Macrophylla (there are two of them above) offer a choice of color: fertilize them with an acidic plant food, and the florets are the blue color as show. Fertilize them with an alkaline plant food, and they are, instead, a light pink (much the same reaction as litmus paper). As you can tell, this year they were fed an acidic diet! A close-up of the florets is shown below.
The hydrangea are getting ready to put on a great show in 2000. They're just starting to acquire their blue color (I once again fed them with Miracid to ensure the color), and they have many florets this year.
It's early July, and the hydrangea have colored up and are in full bloom.
It's now the middle of October, and the hydrangea has popped out one last floret.
The Hydrangea have bloomed in 2001 in fine fashion!
It's early July, and the hydrangea are at the peak of their bloom.
It's the end of June 2003 and the hydrangea have begun to bloom.
It's now the middle of October, and while the flowers have long since faded, the hydrangea has done a good impression of a weightlifter on steroids!
The horrid winter of 2003-2004 did a number on the hydrangea, killing it down the the ground. It took its own sweet time growing back this year, but it has now, in mid-September, finally begun to bloom.
It's early July 2005 and the hydrangea is in full bloom. As you can see in these photos, as in years past, I've fed it Miracid to give the blue florets.
Cut down to the ground during the winter, April of 2006 has the hydrangea springing back to life.
It's the beginning of August and, having had to cut the hydrangea down to the ground in the spring, it's not too much of a surprise that I have but a single snowball. Nor is it a surprise that it's blue -- since they react much like litmus paper, I've fertilized it with Miracid to get the blue color.
The hydrangea started new growth in the very warm January of 2007. The frigid February and March took care of that and I expected that I'd have to cut them back to the ground again. Much to my surprise, a couple of warm days in late April have them taking off like a skyrocket!
The first of June shows just how well the hydrangea are doing.
A little more than two weeks later, and wow!
In early August, this beauty opened up.
The mild winter of 2007 - 2008 did wonders for the hydrangea as none of the stalks died off, so it really took off and is now about four feet tall and literally covered with buds like these. We should have a bumper crop of snowballs!
It's now mid-June and the snowballs are doing well, getting ready to explode.
Late June finds the hydrangea in full bloom.
In 2009, the hydrangea came through the winter very well and have started to grow amazingly fast!
Just about ready to pop!
And they've popped!
The hydrangea came through the winter of 2010 in fine fashion and has begun to grow in the early spring
In the newly reworked foundation bed in the side yard garden, the landscaper planted two peegee hydrangea. These are rather different from the Macrophylla hydrangea above. They produce smaller snow white snowballs, and I look forward to seeing them in bloom. Here they are just after planting.
It's now early June and the old hydrangea next to the front steps has begun to bloom. It seems we're in for quite a crop of snowballs! This year they will be blue as I've been feeding the shrub with MirAcid.
It's late June and the two new peegee hydrangea have leafed out and started to form buds.
Meantime, the old hydrangea in the front is in full bloom.
The hydrangea in the front yard survived the horrible winter in fine shape and in mid-April 2011 has begin to leaf out.
By mid-May, the hydrangea in the front yard has already begun to form flower buds.
It's early June and the blue snowballs have burst forth!
You have got to love the snowballs!
The peegee hydrangea, planted last year, have leafed out and seem to be doing fine in late April 2011.
By mid-July, the buds have formed and are swelling.
With the winter being so mild, it's little surprise that the hydrangea in the front yard came to life along all of its stems rather than pushing up from the ground as it does after a bad winter. Here it is in late March 2012.
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