Hydrangea macrophylla

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Taxonomy (1)

Classification: Angiosperm, dicot
Family: Hydrangeaceae
Common name: French Hydrangea, Bigleaf Hydrangea
Varieties: Endless Summer

General Information (1,4,5)

Region of Origin: Japan and Korea
USDA Plants Hardiness Zones: 6-10
Growth Habit: Shrub

  • Size: 8 feet
  • Flowering: June-August

Diagnostic Characteristics

Leaves (1,5)

  • Arrangement: Opposite
  • Simple/Compound: Simple
  • Shape: Obovate to elliptic
  • Other: Serrated, 4-8 inches

Stem/Bark (2)

  • Color: Straw tan

Flower (5)

  • Color: Pink or blue
  • Size: 2 inches
  • Inflorescence type: Cymose corymbs

Fruit (2)

  • Fruit type: Capsule
  • Size: 1/4-5/16 inch

Horticultural Information (1,3)

  • Light: Full sun to partial shade
  • Maintenance: Easy to care for
  • Landscape Uses: Border, accent

Interesting Facts (1)

  • Flowers will change color depending on the pH of the soil: acidic soils make dark purple to blue flowers, basic soils make pink, dull green, and white flowers
  • Easily air dried, can use hair spray to preserve


1) Christman, S. (2007). Hydrangea macrophylla. Retrieved from http://www.floridata.com/ref/H/hydran_m.cfm
2) Davis Landscape Architecture. (2013). Plant of the week: Hydrangea macrophylla. Retrieved from http://davisla.wordpress.com/2011/10/05/plant-of-the-week-hydrangea-macropyla/
3) King, J (2013). Hydrangeas! Hydrangeas! Retrieved from http://www.hydrangeashydrangeas.com/index.html
4) Knox, G. (2012). French Hydrangea for Gardens in North and Central Florida. Retrieved from http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ep330
5) Dirr, M. (1998). Manual of Woody Landscape Plants. (5th ed., pp. 208-211). Champaign, Illinois: Stipes Publishing L.L.C.

Prepared by Brittany Mixon as a course requirement for BIOL 3630/5630, Spring 2013
Edited by Jessica Bartek