Oh June, how I love thee! Why you ask? Hydrangeas of course! My Annabelle hydrangeas have started to bloom which makes me so happy. My husband and I, with the help of his parents, planted a row of them 5 years ago when we landscaped the house. They are in an area right off the patio and I can see them from our living room. The big beautiful green and white blooms are showy and classic at the same time. They make the perfect hedge and have always performed well.
It took me awhile to figure out the maintenance with these heavy shrubs. I’ve had years where the hydrangeas were in full bloom and then fell clear over after a rain storm. Nothing is more irritating to a gardener than having pretty blooms come your way only to be destroyed before you can even enjoy them. Tom solved the problem by installing a few half size T posts with a small fence in front of them to help prevent the falling. You can’t even see the fence once all the leaves are all out.
I’ve also dealt with the dreaded Japanese beetle destroying the leaves. I’ve tried picking them off by hand, sprinkling them with Sevin, setting up beetle traps away from the shrubs and spraying them with other pesticides. I hate using these pesticides and it doesn’t seem like I was ever getting ahead of the problem. Last fall and this spring I’ve tried something new. I found this product called milky spore that you sprinkle on the ground every few feet where you have problems. The spores are watered in and when the grubs start eating, they ingest them and get infected. When they die, they spread more of the spore in the ground, infecting more grubs and preventing the beetles from ever coming out. I’m hoping this is the solution to my problem. Great thing about this product is it’s supposed to last 10 years and become even more effective after it gets spread around by the grubs. You can check out the product here: http://amzn.to/2r2tYK4. Here’s hoping. I’ll write another post when the season hits to update everyone on how it has worked.
One of the greatest things about Annabelle hydrangeas is that they bloom on both old and new wood. Meaning you can cut them, bring in the blooms for arrangements and they will bless you with new flowers all summer long. It’s my go to flower for cutting because I know I’ll get more. Up next for flowering are my limelight hydrangeas. They are going to be amazing and the shrubs have become HUGE, can’t wait! I hope you are enjoying what’s blooming in your garden this time of year too. Leave a comment about your favorite flowers this time of year!