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Hydrangea Not Blooming

Category Flowers
Determining why your plant is not blooming can be a mystery. This guide is about hydrangea not blooming.
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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
August 21, 2016

My housemate cut my old wood hydrangea back to the ground 2-3 years ago, and after sternly making sure he never does it again (!) I have waited and watched for it to bloom once again. So far it hasn't. I don't fertilize it, and we've had plenty of rain this year, it gets plenty enough sun, but there it sits in all its leafy green glory, refusing to put out a single blossom. How long after such a hard pruning will it take for my poor hydrangea to bloom once again? Would bone meal help?

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March 1, 20170 found this helpful

My plant book says if they are pruned wrong it can take 3 years to come out of it. Meanwhile, I would fertilize it.

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March 2, 20170 found this helpful

You need to prune it after it's done flowering for the season. If done before, it will retard the pruning for a while.

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By 0 found this helpful
August 20, 2016

I have 4 plants in different areas of my yard and not one has produced a flower this year. They all have plenty of green leaves. Why?

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August 22, 20160 found this helpful

Hello !

It could be due to the way you pruned them. Pruning an hydrangea is not easy. It has to be done at the end of the winter season. You should first cut the dead flowers but just above the new bud, that is the important point, because the flowers appears on the old wood only, that is the part of the branches which are already one or two years old. This is to make the hydrangea produce flowers, and to keep a nice shape and help the growth of new shoots you have to first cut the dead branches (they are blackened) and some of the oldest branches, to recognize the oldest branches is easy they are whiter, stronger and branched. You have to cut right to the foot, because you want more space and light for the new shoots.

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By 0 found this helpful
April 11, 2010

I have had 2 hydrangea bushes for years now and they don't bloom. I just have beautiful green leaves every year. They are planted in the open. Every thing around them blooms; lilacs, daffodils, torch lilies, and weigelias, but not them.

Can anybody help me? Thanks.

Hardiness Zone: 7b

By Kay from Boonville, NC

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August 14, 20150 found this helpful

I bought a hydrngeas from a nursery several years ago. It had blooms when I got it, but hasn't bloomed since. Do I need to prune it to force the bloom.

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June 26, 20160 found this helpful

Hi, I Had this problem once. I Was told not to prune them after July because you will risk cutting off future blooms. Apparently they begin their new bloom process early. I have mine in a large pot and have not pruned them for two years and they have bloomed since. I prune them in mid July if I prune them at all and rarely water them in the winter. So far so good.

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July 29, 20120 found this helpful

I have 2 "Endless Summer" hydrangea plants. They are planted about 20 inches apart so they get the same water and sun. Both had blossoms last year. This year, one is full of blossoms and the other does not have one, not even a bud. Both are the same size and full green. Any ideas?

By Joann G.

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August 6, 20120 found this helpful

I'm not sure where you are located, but we had early hot weather in March, which caused my Endless Summer to bud out early and then we got several killing frosts in April and May which froze all the buds off. The best way to ensure your Endless Summer will bloom is to cover the plant completely with shredded leaves or straw for the winter and don't remove the protection until mid-late May.

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August 6, 20120 found this helpful

Hi Adina! I agree with Adina. The exact same thing happened to my Endless Summer. They also are heavy feeders so next year you might want to feed them with an acidic fertilizer.

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By 0 found this helpful
July 25, 2012

My hydrangea plant hasn't had blooms for the past two years. Should I dig them up or what can I do to invigorate them to bloom? All I get are the green leaves.

By Jim B

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July 30, 20120 found this helpful

It kind of depends what zone you are in and what type of hydrangea you have whether they bloom. Many times if you don't have a hardy hydrangea that blooms on both old and new wood, the blossoms fall off with a frost and then you don't get any flowers. The hydrangeas that bloom on both old and new wood are your best bet if you want flowers. I am in zone 5 and the hydrangeas that are suited for the south are not suitable here.

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August 1, 20120 found this helpful

I would leave them where they are and fertilize them this fall & put some epsom salt (sprinkle 3 or 4 tablespoons around each). The only other things are water and don't trim until after they bloom as some bloom on old growth and some on new growth each year. Lots of water and mulch with pine straw or oak leaves ground up with the lawn mower.

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August 4, 20130 found this helpful

I have had my blue mophead hydrangea for two years. Last year I transplanted it in my yard, facing the west, and it seemed like the western exposure was too strong, because the leaves were turning brown, so I moved it to the southwest side of my home. It has lots of healthy dark green leaves, but still no blooms. I have tried everything, used black cow manure, Epsom salt (at different times) and I water it every other day, but still no blooms.

By Lynn T.

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August 5, 20130 found this helpful

It took my mophead several years to bloom--about three as I remember. I didn't do anything to it. I am a put it in the ground and let it be. Give it a couple of years from the last planting and unless your soil is very poor, just leave it alone. Hope this helps.

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August 12, 20111 found this helpful

I have a hydrangea that blooms beautifully on one side, but not the other! What is wrong?

By Peg

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By 0 found this helpful
June 13, 2011

My hydrangea is growing larger and larger, but has no buds. Is there something I need to add to the soil or just be more patient? I have a second kind, but it has small clusters of little flowers and they are starting to bloom so they are OK. Thanks for any help you can give.

By Jackie

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June 15, 20110 found this helpful

Hydrangeas need a certain ph level. Though I know this effects the color of the blooms not sure if it will keep blooms from blooming. Check local nurseries if you don't find a good anwser here.

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June 21, 20111 found this helpful

My neighbor puts used coffee grounds (free at Starbucks!) around the base of her hydrangea plants. They have the largest, most beautiful blooms I've ever seen!

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By 0 found this helpful
April 10, 2010

My hydrangea grows, but does not bloom. Any advice?

Hardiness Zone: 5b

By Becky

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April 11, 20100 found this helpful

EasyInstructionsThings You'll Need:

Pruning shears

Garden gloves

Chicken wire

Shovel

Fertilizer

Water

Step 1Find out if the hydrangeas are the type that bloom off of old wood-growth from previous years. Hard winters can damage old growth, causing it to die back. If this is the case, there will be no flowers during the current growing season. Protect old-wood growth by building a chicken wire cage around the plant and filling it with leaves and pine needles to help insulate the plant during the winter months.

Step 2Don't over-prune hydrangeas that bloom off of old growth in early summer or late winter because the plant will die back even further, resulting in no buds to put forth blooms. Prune in the spring when the buds can be seen.

Step 3Plant hydrangeas in shade but not too much shade. If the plant is producing beautiful leaves but no flowers then it's getting too much shade. Transplant to another location.

Step 4To much fertilizer and water or not enough fertilizer and water will cause the plant to not flower. Fertilize in early spring and early autumn using a time-release formula. A time release fertilizer mix of 10-10-10 or 16-16-16 works well.

Step 5Transplant non-blooming hydrangeas to sides of buildings or northern and eastern slopes for better protection during the winter months. Also plant under evergreen trees, which will offer good protection.

good luck.

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April 16, 20101 found this helpful

I would go with the right fertilizer. You might have been using the kind that works on the roots (nitrogen based) and not the flowering. The 10-10-10 should be fine or ask at a local nursery if you want to really push the blooms.

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By 0 found this helpful
August 6, 2014

I have 4 hydrangea plants. I planted them at least 4 years ago, I never trim them, I just leave them the way it is all year round. I planted them, some in the shade and some in the sun. For many years, they never bloomed. Last year 1 of them suddenly bloomed 2 flowers, but the others still never bloom and this year none bloomed. The leaves are always green, big and healthy, just no blooms. What is wrong with my hydrangea? I used slow released liquid fertillizer with the middle number higher, but still no bloom.
What can I do to change it? Here is the picture of last year's plant with bloom, it had 2 pink flowers, changed from cream to pink.

By Sharon C.

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By 0 found this helpful
September 2, 2008

I have three Nikko Blue Hydrangeas that used to bloom beautifully, but this year there are very little blooms, and most of them are near the bottom of the plants. The mop heads that bloomed are just as large as ever, but nowhere near the quantity of blooms we're used to seeing.

Any idea why this might have happened? We're wondering if the warm spell in the Spring and then a cool down (possibly even a freeze) might have contributed to the problem. We have other varieties of hydrangeas that performed well this year, but the Nikko Blue's were disappointing.

Hardiness Zone: 5b


Ruth

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
September 4, 20080 found this helpful

Linda, it depends on where you live if they prefer shade. If you are in the south where there are hot summers, then it is a good idea to put them in the shade. But I am in the midwest, in zone 5 and I have hydrangeas on the east side of my house and they get morning sun and do just great.

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Anonymous
April 4, 20160 found this helpful

Nikki blue only blooms on old wood (previous year's wood). Needs winter protection; we've had some cold winters. Also don't prune after the end of July. You don't really need to prune mop heads anyway.

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By 0 found this helpful
July 7, 2014

I have a blue flowing hydrangea, it had blooms last year, but so far it only seems to be growing higher, all leaves.

By Gwen G.

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By 0 found this helpful
June 18, 2010

My mophead hydrangea has flower buds, but only a few open up. What am I doing wrong?

Hardiness Zone: 6a

By Barbara from MA

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February 18, 20081 found this helpful
Q: I planted a Nikko Blue Hydrangea 2 years ago but it has never bloomed. I fertilize it and it is in a sunny location (6 hours of sun). It is healthy looking and green but no flowers. What can be wrong?

Hardiness Zone: 4b

Maureen From Nova Scotia Canada

A: Maureen,

Your hydrangea sounds like it's getting the right amount of shade/sun, so as long as you're not using a fertilizer that is too high in nitrogen, the problem is probably your Nova Scotia winters. Cold damage is the most common reason this type of hydrangea fails to bloom. You didn't mention whether or not you cover your Nikko in the winter. Although they are usually rated to zone 4 or 5, Nikkos (especially when young) should be given winter protection. You can do this by surrounding the shrub with a cage made from chicken wire and filling it up with leaves or straw. The Nikko Blue blooms on old wood so pruning it can also be tricky. Flower buds usually form on the stems sometime between August and October, so most gardeners prune them by the end of July. Later pruning puts you at risk for cutting off next year's buds. Fortunately, if Nikkos are located in a fairly protected area, pruning usually isn't necessary for this type of hydrangea unless you need to rein them in or revitalize them. Dead stems can be removed anytime. Good luck!

Ellen

More Answers:

Nikko Blue Hydrangea Not Blooming

Does your Hydrangea die back to the ground every year (in winter)? If so, most Hydrangeas only bloom on "old wood". If it dies to the ground, there is no "old wood" for it to bloom on. Really good winter protection, mulching very, very deep, surrounding it with a barrier and filling the barrier with straw or hay may help. A good variety, which blooms on new and old wood is the new "endless Summer" variety. For the Nikko, I would try heavy protection and/or moving it to a location where it is protected from wind, etc. If you can't keep old wood, it never will bloom. (05/08/2006)

By

Nikko Blue Hydrangea Not Blooming

Hydrangeas prefer shade! (05/10/2006)

By Linda

Comment Was this helpful? 1

April 10, 20100 found this helpful

How do you make hydrangeas bloom? I have beautiful lush bushes with no blooms. I do not cut them down at the end of the season.

Hardiness Zone: 7a

By Lycetc from South Jersey

Answers:

Hydrangeas Not Blooming

Sometimes if you get a frost after the buds have already formed, it can affect the blooms. What type of hydrangea do you have? A mophead? If you grow the new ones that are out like, Endless Summer to name one, they bloom on both old and new wood so you have a better chance of them blooming. Also a paniculata will bloom every time. I have two paniculata hudgrangeas called "Limelight" and they will always bloom because they are more cold tolerant. (09/17/2009)

By Laniegirl

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September 14, 20090 found this helpful

We have two hydrangea plants that were given to us at same time. We planted them side by side at the same time. Both plants flourished, one had many blooms. The other is just green and healthy looking, no blooms. What can we do to make it bloom or should we just remove non-blooming plant?

Hardiness Zone: 9a

Betty from Orange, TX

Answers:

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September 2, 20080 found this helpful

How do I get my Nikko Blue hydrangea to bloom? I planted it 3 years ago, and it has never bloomed. I planted one in full shade, and one in morning sun with partial shade.

Hardiness Zone: 6a

Nancy from Greenwood, IN

Answers:

Nikko Blue Hydrangea Not Blooming

I absolutely LOVE hydrangeas, they bring back memories of hiding under beautiful blue hydrangea bushes as a child. Anyway, I've decided just to buy one hydrangea bush to plant at my new place. I was going to plant a bunch because a gal who sells them and has over 40 hydrangea bushes herself. She told me that the reason they are named "HYDRA" is because they need LOTS of hydration (water). She said hers are planted right next to a creek that runs through her property & they still aren't over watered! She told me that they need to be watered each & every day (even though we live in Seattle & our grass usually stays green all year long even without watering). I don't want my water bill to go up, so I've decided to keep my hydrangea plants to a minimum.

So, that's my question to you about your blooms. Are you watering your Hydrangea enough? Apparently they need to be flooded! Also, did you know that hydrangeas are a snap to propagate. Just take a small cutting at a place where a leaf will grow in the future and put that in clean water. You don't even need rooting hormone! I guess they are one of the easiest plants to propagate. Pretty soon you'll have dozens, and your water bill will be in the hundreds of dollars :). (02/18/2008)

By Cyinda

Nikko Blue Hydrangea Not Blooming

I have a white hydrangea. It took longer than three years before it got flowers on it. Gardening sometimes takes patience. :) (02/22/2008)

By Carol in PA

Comment Was this helpful? Yes
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