Friday, September 3, 2010

Endless summer

I enjoy having a nice garden, though I have only dabbled. I have gone the seed route (which can often prove to be quite a challenge - read unsuccessful) and I have just gone and bought some stuff from the store (which can be very costly).

A few years ago, when the Endless Summer hydrangea came out, I found one at a local grocery store on sale. Really cheap on sale. I grew up having hydrangeas outside our house, that had probably been there since forever (that house was built in the late 1800's), but were the "old" style that really weren't that colorful. I still loved them, but when this hydrangea came out, I was sold. I loved that it was colorful, I loved that you could alter the color, and I loved that it bloomed all summer. And the best part, full sun was not a prerequisite. I don't have much full sun, and I really envisioned these in front of my house, under a large picture window, that just happens to be the north side of the house. It's not shaded, but neither is it sunny.

So I planted my plant there. And it never flowered. Or, maybe I got one mophead on it. The next year... nothing. I got bad advice and pruned it - a no-no for the Endless Summer, which blooms on new and old growth. I thought for sure the thing was a goner. It just never really went anywhere. I was going to move it actually. Then, this year, maybe due to the warm, early spring we had, or maybe it just decided it was time, it sort of came to life. It had more leaves on it, and low and behold TWO mopheads. (That's what they call the cluster of flowers. Not all hydrangeas are mopheads, though.) And later, a third. Wow. I realize that 3 clusters of flowers is not great, but it's still a very small bush, probaly not even reaching 2 feet high.

The flower heads were a nice lavender color, but then I dumped some pickle juice on the plant and the 3rd bloom came out really pink. The thing that I am most surprised and pleased by is the color they turned after they were "done." Normally, the hydrangeas I've seen turn pale or brownish or white. This one turned kind of greenish, and then got this beautiful bright pink blush on it.

Funny how a plant can make a person so happy.


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