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Beginner Gardening Questions: What Am I Doing Wrong?

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Forum: Beginner Gardening QuestionsReplies: 8, Views: 79
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claregirl
Newtown, CT

July 28, 2013
11:57 AM

Post #9614400

I just can't seem to get any more blooms then you see in the picture. Maybe I'm not fertilizing it enough or not at the right time. I don't know. Anybody have any ideas?

Thumbnail by claregirl
Click the image for an enlarged view.

WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

July 28, 2013
1:10 PM

Post #9614458

Hi claregirl, cant say for sure what is needed for your HYDRANGEA, as it looks very healthy, looks happy and yet there appears to be flowers growing on one side and not the other.
Question and answers required really, like when did you plant this shrub, what type of soil do you grow it in, there are different variations between one area and another depending on what has been added to the soil at planting (IF ANYTHING) I note that the shrub is also growing very close to some form of pine and various other trees, these trees will remove a lot of moisture from the soil by definition they are larger and greedier for water, the pine will also alter the PH of the soil and in fact, maybe they were planted many years ago because the PH suited these type of tree's.

Also the trees will be causing shade for the shrub to compete with as I note the flowering area is getting sun but that will depend on the time of day the picture was taken and what way the shrub is facing, south, west etc.

I would go to garden store and buy a very cheep soil testing kit and do a test to get you started as these kit's cost a few dollars and they give you almost instant results and if I can use one, then anyone can !!!!, the results will tell you the PH and what to add (if anything) to alter the soil PH to suite Hydrangea's.
I must say again, the plnt looks healthy to me and if only recently planted then all it needs is time.
Good Luck and Best Regards. WeeNel.
claregirl
Newtown, CT

July 28, 2013
7:26 PM

Post #9614788

Wow, lots of things to reply to.
The shrub has been there about 5 years. It's on the west side of my house so it gets morning sun and afternoon shade which I think it's supposed to get. I live in Newtown, Connecticut and our soil is very acidic. It's actually not close to the pine tree at all. It's just the perspective of the picture. I never thought about the moisture. Maybe I should water it. I just never thought about that after it was established. Except, this spring we received an overabundance of rain. I'm surprised it didn't swim away. (lol) Then we have been getting very hot, sunny days in the last month.

It is a very healthy shrub, it just doesn't bloom much.

flowAjen

flowAjen
central, NJ
(Zone 6b)

July 28, 2013
7:50 PM

Post #9614808

If you have good soil, I wouldn't fertilize. I have never fertilized my hydrangeas and they are covered in blooms
claregirl
Newtown, CT

July 29, 2013
9:25 AM

Post #9615295

flowAjen, give me your secret. lol

I think I'll take some soil to the UCONN extension in the next town. Maybe that will tell me something. I hope.

flowAjen

flowAjen
central, NJ
(Zone 6b)

July 29, 2013
9:32 AM

Post #9615303

LOL, I think the secret is ignoring them...^_^ hee hee

If it doesn't rain I make sure to water but other than that I haven't done anything to them except some deadheading, I used some(spray painted gold) for centerpiece displays for our Christmas banquet at church

flowAjen

flowAjen
central, NJ
(Zone 6b)

July 29, 2013
9:36 AM

Post #9615307

Here's 2 in early June that surround my fairy garden
close up mid June

These are in mostly shade

Thumbnail by flowAjen   Thumbnail by flowAjen         
Click an image for an enlarged view.

WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

July 29, 2013
2:38 PM

Post #9615589

It sounds like you have everything these lovely shrubs require, my only other comment I can give now is that here we have had a really, really bad wet cold winter then last 4 weeks weve had a heatwave, the hottest on record, but guess normal temps for you guy's, anyway my point with that is, wet soil that then becomes baked by hot temp's becomes hard packed on the top like a crust, this crust can prevent any water from penetrating down to the roots of you shrubs / plants.
If I were you I would gently fork the top soil to break it up slightly, then add some plant food (there are plenty to choose from but maybe a multi purpose feed will be best for now, and again fork it into the soil, add plenty water SLOWLY, so it gets a chance to soak way down taking some feed with it, leave the shrub alone for a couple of weeks and just see IF there are any new flower buts showing up.
I feel your plant is healthy enough and it just needs a boost to get flowers more evenly spread over the shrub BUT, I still feel the trees are maybe getting the full drink of water and the shrub not being the dominant one is only getting enough to keep it growing and not enough to energise it into making blooms.

Hope this makes a bit of difference to you and this plant will then bloom it's heart out for you.
Best Regards, WeeNel.
claregirl
Newtown, CT

July 30, 2013
12:06 PM

Post #9616559

flowAjen, beautiful pictures. I hope I can get mine like that.

WeeNel, thank you. I'll give it a try.

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