Summer Crush Hydrangeas produce beautiful bright green flower buds that bloom into the red to purple depending on the acidity of the soil. They don’t grow as large as some other varieties of hydrangeas and for this reason, they can be grown well in containers. Today, I will explain how best to do this.
Use regular garden compost, potting mix, or garden soil. If using garden soil ensure the pH is 6.0-6.5. Ideally, put your hydrangeas where they’ll only get morning sun and no afternoon sun, keep the soil moist by checking it regularly, and fertilize them twice a year with 10-10-10 fertilizer.
Summer Crush hydrangeas are mophead hydrangea. As you may know, these grow large rounded flowers and require slightly different conditions to other types of hydrangeas such as panicle hydrangeas.
Garden soil can be OK to use as the soil for potted hydrangeas. But, without a soil testing kit, it’s difficult to know what pH your garden soil is. The soil should have a pH of 6.0 to 6.5, a good idea is to pick up a soil testing kit at your garden supply store or extension center (if you live in the US).
The typical compost and potting mix you buy in stores have a pH of around 6.0 to 8.0, ideally, check the label to see what pH it is. If the pH is lower closer to 6.0 it will produce bluer flowers. If the pH is more alkaline it will produce dark/deep pink flowers. The soil should be free draining to allow the soil to keep moist but not become waterlogged.
Potted Summer Crush hydrangeas are a bit easier to water because you can very easily see if they’re getting too much or not enough water. When they’re planted in the ground you can’t see whether the water has drained all the way through.
A good rule of thumb is to keep the soil moist to damp. Exactly how much you water them varies based on how hot it is. But, around 2 to 3 times a week is generally enough in temperature climates.
To water them pour water evenly around the base being careful not to get any on the plant if you can help it. Apply enough water that you see the water begin to come out of the bottom of the pot then stop.
Now and then in between watering dip a finger into the soil to feel how moist it is. If it feels dry to the touch then they need water.
Over a month or two you’ll soon get a feel for how often to water them to keep the soil moist. In the hot summer, or if you live in a hot climate like California you’ll need to water them once a day or every other day as they’ll have much more demand for water.
The ideal amount of sunlight for Summer Crush Hydrangeas is in full sun in the morning and full shade from midday onwards. If this isn’t possible based on the layout of your garden aim to give them 4 to 6 hours of full sunlight per day.
Summer Crush Hydrangeas can take full sun throughout the entire day so if you don’t have a sheltered area they will still do well. The flowers just won’t last as long, as the sun will cause them to break down faster.
When to plant Summer Crush Hydrangeas in pots
If you picked up some Summer Crush Hydrangeas from a store or friend and want to transfer them to a bigger pot then the best time to do it is in early spring and early fall (autumn).
In the spring they put on a lot of new growth so it’s best to get them settled before then. And in winter they go dormant so getting them established before then will help them survive over the winter.
If and when to prune Summer Crush Hydrangeas when potted
There is very little need to prune potted Summer Crush Hydrangeas. The main reasons would be if you want to shape them. For example, you want to make them more rounded.
They only grow to a maximum size of 3 feet (1 m) tall, and about 4 feet wide (1.2 m). Depending on where you put them they can get a bit too wide and you may want to trim them back.
The great thing about Summer Crush Hydrangeas unlike other varieties of hydrangeas is that they flower on both new and old wood. So, each year you’re virtually guaranteed to get flowers.
Fertilizing potted Summer Crush Hydrangeas will generally increase flower production, and how much new growth they put on. The new growth is only a factor if they aren’t fully grown yet.
Once, fully growth the main benefit of fertilizing them is that they produce more flowers. But, this is something you should monitor and if you’re happy with the flower production there’s no need to add additional fertilizer.
A solid fertilizer to use is on that is 10-10-10 N-P-K. Any all-purpose fertilizer will also work fine. It’s best to fertilizer them twice in the year. Once in early spring, and again in early summer so once every 3 months in the warmer months.
Summer Crush hydrangeas are not poisonous to deer-like some other hydrangeas so if some deer are lingering around your yard you may find that they’ve come through and chomped back your Summer Crush hydrangeas.
Other pest insects like mealybugs can infest them. As well as mold on the surface of the leaves. Generally, all of the pest issues will show in the leaves, and if you notice any leaf issues you should treat them by spraying them with neem oil after sunset for a week or so. This will kill any pest bugs, as well as, mold.