Bigleaf Hydrangea, French Hydrangea, Mophead 'Hamburg'

Hydrangea macrophylla

Family: Hydrangeaceae (hy-drain-jee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Hydrangea (hy-DRAIN-juh) (Info)
Species: macrophylla (mak-roh-FIL-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Hamburg
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36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:

Magenta (Pink-Purple)

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Mid Fall



Provides winter interest

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From herbaceous stem cuttings

From softwood cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

By simple layering

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Flowers are good for drying and preserving

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Indianapolis, Indiana

Gardeners' Notes:


On Oct 22, 2009, DonnaJG from Indianapolis, IN wrote:

I absolutely love this hydrangea. I have quite a collection of hydrangeas and this one, if not my very favorite, is very near the top. Actually, I can't think of another hydrangea that I like better. It was especially gorgeous with beautiful deep pink (we have alkaline soil) mophead flowers in late spring/early summer that held the color for weeks, then gradually turned greenish and now in the fall are turning a magnificent red. I visited Heronswood Nursery in 2005 when Dan Hinckley was there on a day that they were featuring lectures on hydrangeas and had all of their beautiful hydrangeas in bloom to choose from. Unfortunately I was not able to attend the lectures (which I regret to this day) but I did purchase several of the hydrangeas with the most gorgeous blooms and 'Hamburg' wa... read more


On Dec 2, 2004, lmelling from Ithaca, NY (Zone 5b) wrote:

From the "Encyclopedia of Hydrangeas," (Van Gelderen -2004)," A strong growing shrub with massive foliage. Flowers deep pink or purple, or blue, in huge corymbs, sepals serrate. Flowering time is from Auguest to September. This cultivar is easily confused with its sister seedlinger 'Europa' and 'Altona'. The differences are minor. Still in cultivation. Bred by H. Schadendorff, Germany, in 1931. RHS Award: AGM 1992. Rampp Nursery introduced a different plant (light pink flowers in a tight corymb) with same same in the CITY-LINE series. This ractice is against the ICNCP rules of nomenclature."

No hardiness zone given

In "Hydrangeas for American Gardens," by Michael A. Dirr (2004), it says flowers last an unusually long time and turn red in autumn.