Hydrangeas are stunning and reliable flowering shrubs that you should consider adding to your garden. They suit all garden sizes and display blooms for much longer when compared to other plants. If you want to enjoy a lively garden even when most other plants are dormant, consider adding these plants to your yard.
If you are a beginner gardener, don’t worry: these plants grow in the ground or containers and don’t need much from your side. Of course, you’ll have to be familiar with their basic needs, but once you recreate the optimal conditions for their growth, you shouldn’t have any issues with having them thriving in your garden.
But what if you have clay soil in your garden? Do hydrangeas do well in clay soil, and what should you do to amend the soil to welcome them in your yard? If those questions are stopping you from getting these plants, keep reading.
In this essential guide, we’ll go through what do hydrangeas need to survive in clay soil. Plus, we’ll outline what you can do to make the environment more adequate for their survival. If you want to grow healthy and productive hydrangeas, you are in the right place!
Do Hydrangeas do Well in Clay Soil?
Clay is a challenging soil to work through when growing plants in your garden. You’ll most likely have to amend it, regardless of the type of plant you decide to add to your yard.
Gardeners who deal with clay soil might benefit from knowing that hydrangeas do well even under poor drainage conditions and heavy soils. While these might not be the optimal environments for hydrangeas, your plants will have no problems growing there.
Plus, you’ll be able to reduce the watering frequency when adding your plants to soil rich in clay, which is perfect if you don’t have much time to spend in your garden. Still, it is good practice to amend your soil for welcoming hydrangeas. Jump to the next section to find out how to recreate the optimal conditions for the growth of your plants.
How Can You Amend Clay Soil for Hydrangeas?
Hydrangeas are versatile plants: they don’t need much to survive. Plus, they adapt to most soil conditions, including heavy and poor-draining ones. But survival isn’t the same as thriving.
To improve clay soil and increase drainage and water nutrients, you should consider lightening it and adding high-quality organic matter to the mixture. That could come in the form of compost or manure. Both can loosen the soil and add essential elements to it, crucial for the survival and growth of your hydrangeas.
Don’t forget to plant your hydrangeas under full sun to partial shade to make the most out of their blooms. Keep in mind that too much sunshine might burn your plant’s leaves and flowers. Plus, it will cause the soil to dry quickly, demanding you to increase the frequency in your watering schedule.
Plant them either directly on the ground or in a large container to accommodate the plants’ growth even for several years. Small containers tend to dry up too quickly, requiring constant watering, which might be a hassle if you don’t have much time to spend in your garden. Consider adding mulch around them to hold moisture and increase the nutrient content.
Pay attention to your watering schedule if you planted hydrangeas in clay soil. This material holds moisture, meaning you will have to decrease watering frequency. The best way to understand your plant’s needs is to feel the ground with your fingers.
Hydrangeas like moist conditions but not soggy ones: if moisture seems to get as deep as two to three inches from the surface, wait a couple of days more before watering your plants.
On the contrary, if you feel it dry more than an inch deep, it is time to add extra moisture to your plants. The amount of water will depend not only on the soil type but also on the size of the container. Avoid letting your hydrangeas’ roots sit on the water, as you can cause them to rot.
Do Hydrangeas do Well in Clay Soil: The Bottom Line
In short, you can grow hydrangeas even in clay soil. However, if you want a thriving plant, you may have to make some amendments. For instance, add organic matter (to make it richer in nutrients) and mulch to improve drainage and moisture (especially if you live in a hot region).
Related Article: When to Plant Hydrangeas?