Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Endless Summer’ (Mophead/Bigleaf Hydrangea, Hortensia)
- Botanical Name: Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Endless Summer’
- Common Name: Mophead Hydrangea, Bigleaf Hydrangea, French Hydrangea, Hortensia
- Family name: Hydrangeaceae
- Plant type: An ornamental shrub, native to Japan and Korea. It’s a species of Hydrangea widely cultivated and naturalized worldwide in temperate and compatible climates.
- Light: Part sun to light shade. Prefers morning sun and afternoon shade as plant will wilt in the hot sun.
- Moisture: Regular watering as it needs lots of water
- Soil: Moist but well drained. Ideally light, loamy, acidic and enriched with organic matter.
- Propagation: Easily from stem cuttings or ground layering. Let Judith King, a member of the American Hydrangea Society teach you how to! Can also be propagated by dividing the clumps of old established shrub with a shovel.
- Features: Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Endless Summer’ is a mophead type hydrangea with a delightful solid mass of sterile flowers, different from the Lacecap Hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla normalis) which has a center of non-showy fertile flowers surrounded with an outer circle of sterile showy flowers. It is a spectacular deciduous shrub with a rounded habit growing 1-2 meters tall and as wide with huge ball shaped flower clusters (13-20 cm. across) at stem tips!
These mophead blooms can be pink, blue or lavender, depending on the soil pH and maturity. Foliage is luxuriant with medium to dark green leaves measuring 7-20 cm long that are opposite, ovate and serrated.
Endless Summer Hydrangea is unique and keenly sought after! It is the first Hydrangea macrophylla that flowers on both new and old wood, thus extending color virtually throughout the season, delighting endlessly with repeat blooming!
- Care: For best growth and blooms, plant the Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Endless Summer’ where it can enjoy morning sunlight with afternoon shade and keep soil evenly moist. Do not locate it at hot, dry and exposed areas where it’ll be roasted! Since it blooms on new growth, always deadhead to promote repeat bloom! Prune the bush only to remove dead wood or to shape the plant after it has bloomed. It’s quite an easy to grow plant with a moderate growth rate. These Mophead Hydrangea can change the color of their flowers, depending on the soil pH. Blue flowers turn pink in alkaline soil which has dolomitic lime added and pink flowers change to blue in acidic soil which has aluminium sulfate added to it. An interesting read about hydrangea color change here!
- Usage: This versatile Endless Summer Hydrangea will make a superb shrub for accent, specimen or perennial border. Great for container gardening or use as patio/deck container plant to brighten sites with its luxuriant foliage and voluptuous flower clusters! This consistent bloomer will be perfect too for adding colors to shady areas of cottage or woodland garden. Freshly cut blooms can be used in vases or bouquets, and even dried for floral arrangements and wreaths!
- For sub-tropical & temperate regions: Check at Endless Summer Collection’s site to get excellent info for Hydrangea care and growing tips, as well as tips for blooming success. Explore its how-to videos for more!
A dream wish comes true! We’ve always wish to have hydrangeas in our garden, having first viewed these gorgeous blooms during our honeymoon at Penang Hill Resort many decades ago! But had the wrong notion that they can thrive only at our highlands which have compatible cool temperate climate!
Then, one fine morning late last year, a very close friend surprised us with a wonderful gift of 3 newly rooted hydrangea cuttings (6-8ins. tall) in a pot and told us that it’s possible to grow them in our hot lowlands (average 30 degrees C), but locate them at filtered sunny areas. Wow! What great news!
Amazingly, two plants survived and with tender loving care, they successfully matured to about 2.5 ft. tall in less than 6 months and flowered! One plant bloomed bluish-lavender flowers in mid-April, and the other had lovely clear blue flowers in late June as shown in image at the top! Wow, were we thrilled and delighted!! :D
In our tropical heat though, these Hydrangeas do droop from midday onwards but bounce happily back when it’s cooler in the evenings. However, I did wonder why the differences in flower color tones as both cuttings were from the same parent plant! The only change made was we transplanted them after the first flowering into a larger pot and filled up with additional soil. I gather this proves correct what I’ve just read from the internet that Hydrangeas often change color on their own when they are planted or transplanted. They are adjusting to the new environment.
Wow! The internet world is amazing! So much to learn if we care to seek to learn! I’m so glad to be writing this article and in researching got to know so much more about Hydrangeas, one of the most spectacular and popular shrub with its huge traffic-stopper colorful blooms! :)
I’m confident this Bigleaf Hydrangea ‘Endless Summer’ will continue to delight us endlessly! Really fascinating to see their blooms changing color dramatically right before our eyes! Two weeks ago, they were just tiny chartreuse buds, gradually bursting into lovely clear blue florets last week (see image taken July 6 at the topmost) and today maturing to bluish lavender with a bigger mophead too! Remarkable! :)
I just can’t wait to propagate more plants from cuttings! Keeping my fingers crossed though that a stem cutting taken from our first flowering hydrangea plant last Sunday, then divided into two cuttings and push into soil will survive!
Update: November 3, 2007 -
Hooray! Propagation by stem cuttings is a success and the two young plants are thriving well. Meanwhile, here is sharing some recent images of more hydrangea blooms from our garden. Hmm…the newer ‘mopheads’ are seen to be larger as the plant continues to mature in height and bush size with new stems. The bloom clusters captured in November 2, 2007 as shown in the right image measures about 9 inches across! How awesome!
Update: July 21, 2009 - More hydrangea photos from Cactus Valley in Brinchang, Cameron Highlands: