We love our oakleaf hydrangea. At our last home, we had them everywhere. They are indestructible, beautiful, interesting in every season, and did I mention indestructible?
Our current plant was a baby propagated from the mama plant (more on that later) and transported from our old home to our new in an old 2.5-gallon plastic nursery pot. It suffered sun, heat, lack of water, and other multiple abuses before finally getting it tucked into the ground.
And it has taken off in the last three years, quintupling in size. It blooms prolifically. I’ve never seen any insect damage or disease and it stoically shrugged off last winter’s bitter winter temps (which wreaked havoc on the boxwoods and a few of our other shrubs.) This baby is a keeper.
We want more. You can propagate it from cuttings, but we like taking the lowest branches and burying a segment a few inches under the ground, forming a ring around the main plant of potential new offspring. In a few months, after they’ve rooted, you just dig them up , separate the from the parent and, voilà, new hydrangeas.
They do like good drainage and slightly alkaline soil (the blooms are always white despite pH.) And they can get quite big (I’ve seen some eight or nine feet tall) so make sure you plan for that when planting.
We plan on propagating and nestling several more of these around our Northern Kentucky/Ohio River Valley home.
Do you have a shrub that you love? Share a picture of it with us below!