Help with Hydrangea's

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by Remsen1, Jun 5, 2005.

  1. Remsen1

    Remsen1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,020

    I planted two hydrandeas for a customer of mine about 2 weeks ago. They are wilting now. The other plants that I planted are looking really good.

    They are in full sun. The soil there is basically concrete, so I dug some big holes and filled them with soil/compost mix. I've instructed them to water them which they said they have been doing. I watered them myself yesterday. I haven't been back to see if they've perked up. I was thinking that maybe they didn't water them enough, so I watered them really well. I also clipped the dead leaves.

    How can I save these plants?

    Thanks for the help.
  2. The Captain

    The Captain LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 607

    Without seeing the plants or doing any soil tests, my first thought would be over watering. Try removing some of the soil around the edge of the hole to allow for evaporation. If the problem is too much water you may have to remove and replant. Just a late night wild guess.

  3. 1MajorTom

    1MajorTom Former Moderator
    Messages: 6,073

  4. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,112

    Get them out of the direct sun.
  5. Coffeecraver

    Coffeecraver LawnSite Senior Member
    from VA.
    Messages: 793

    I agree with the captain they are most likely too wet
    grab the base and move it ,do you hear the water?
    Dig it back up and examine the planting hole,is it holding water?

    If the plant is sitting in water it cannot take water in and therefore gives the symptoms of drying out ( the wilting ) The plant also cannot get oxygen when it is in water.

    The concrete soil is a good indicator.

    Another cause could be that the plant was rootbound when planted
    If that is the case then when the water hits the plant it rolls down the root system and into the ground,the roots do not absorb the water therefore
    the plant can also dry out.These plants survive the nursery because of the frequent watering they recieve there.When you use the plant you do not water it as much because you have planted it,therefore it does not survive.

  6. NickN

    NickN LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Alabama
    Messages: 1,009

    <i>Get them out of the direct sun.</i>
  7. Remsen1

    Remsen1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,020

    Thanks for the replies. It appears that I should transplant these in order to save them. What would be the best procedure? I was wondering if it would be good to re-pot them and take them under my own care (at my house) until they regain health. I'm thinking of potting them in pots that are larger than the pots that they originally came in. Larger pots would give the roots area to expand, while keeping them pots, would keep them moveable and save me from digging them up when they get healthy again. this way I can constantly monitor and physically control whether the plant is in the sun or shade.

    Do you think this is a good idea?
  8. cleancutccl

    cleancutccl LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 698

    transplant them to a part sun area. Most varieties of hydrangeas can't handle full sun.
  9. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    Sheshovel is right. Hydrangeas don't like full sun. Especially afternoon sun. They can take some sun exposure in the morning or night. But full afternoon sun will not make any hydrangea very happy.

    Hydrangeas do best in partial shade. Not even full shade. PARTIAL shade. They don't mind a little sun. They like it. They just don't want full all-day sun.

    This is your main problem. Get them out of the full sun.

    Watering is always an issue for new plants. But that's not the biggest problem here.

    Also, next time you plant anything, read up on it first. Or at the very least, ask the nursery about it. Most LCOs don't like to ask nurseries questions because they think it will make them look ignorant or unprofessional. That's not true. They are glad to help you and they realize that your main business is not knowing the characteristics of every single plant out there. They understand that they work with plants all day long and you don't. So it's only natural that they'd know more. It's not so much that you're ignorant. It's just that plants aren't your specialty right now. Nothing wrong with that. Just ask them - they'll be glad to help you. But you shouldn't be planting stuff for customers without knowing the plant or tree's needs - period. Do your homework next time. And save yourself the embrassment. You'll look at lot more professional if you'll ask next time and when the customer says, "I'd like to put those new Hydrangeas there..." and you respond with, "I am happy to plant them for you. But hydrangeas aren't going to do well there. Too much sun for them. How about over here?"
  10. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    What I would do is buy the customer some new plants and plant them in the correct area.

    Will what you are suggesting work? Yes, it probably will. I have revived hydrangeas like that before. I had one that a client installed in a sunny area and they asked me to remove it because it was nearly dead. I took it to my house and over the period of several months I was able to revive it. But it took a long time. I don't think your customers are going to want to wait that long.

    Better to just buy them new plants - which is the professional thing to do - and take this as a learning lesson. And then in 2-3 months you'll have some nice hydrangeas to sell to someone else. And finally, you'll get your money back.

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