How To Revive A Dying Hydrangea Plant

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Hydrangeas originally hail from Japan, and there are more than twenty different sorts. We usually only see five of these in North America.

dead hydrangea flowerPin

Macrophylla is the most common Hydrangea, a favorite of gardeners and florists. It is available in a wide variety of colors, including: 

  • Blue
  • Pink
  • White
  • Purple

These pretty plants do best in settings that provide them some shelter from harsh elements, reliable sunlight in the morning, and shade in the afternoon.

Deviations from these conditions can cause mold and mildew problems, which make Hydrangeas quite unhappy. 

Luckily, it is relatively easy to nurse them back to health with simple treatments such as mulch and water and primary care, such as pruning and shade.

In this article, we tell you how to revive a dying Hydrangea. Read on to learn more. 

What Can You Do About Root Rot In Hydrangeas?

If your plant has floppy, yellowed leaves, you may be dealing with a case of root rot. This happens when you overwater, and your soil retains too much water. If the plant is in a pot, you’ll need to repot it into fresh, dry soil. 

If your plant is in the ground, evaluate its setting. If it is in a low-lying area, you may need to move it into a room with a bit of a rise so that excess water can runoff. 

Fresh and wilted hydrangea blooms against a fence.Pin
Photo Credit: Instagram @ra_cheld

If your setting is alright, try turning the soil around the plant to aerate it. Incorporate a little fresh, dry soil into the mix.

The first time you water your Hydrangea after changing the soil, include an antifungal treatment in the water. 

Whether your plant is potted or placed in the landscape, avoid overwatering. With a newly planted hydrangea or a potted plant, you should provide deep watering about once a week, directly to the soil. 

An established plant in the landscape may do just fine, relying solely on natural rainwater. 

What Can You Do About Mildew On Hydrangea Leaves? 

Check your setting to be sure your plant is getting ample air circulation. If it is a potted, indoor plant, allow it to stand alone. You may wish to add a fan, running on a low setting, directed into the corner of the room to keep the air moving slightly without blowing wind directly onto the plant. 

Fading pink hydrangea flowers with green leaves.Pin
Photo Credit: Instagram @nolanathome

If your plant is outdoors, be sure it is planted far enough away from other large plants to allow good air circulation. Prune out older, damaged, excess canes to improve air circulation. Rake fallen leaves, grass clippings, etc., away from the base of the plant.

Give your plant a foliar fungal treatment, and incorporate a systemic fungal product into your subsequent watering treatment. 

Check the soil. If it is soggy, your plant may also suffer from root rot. You’ll need to repot or move the plant or aerate its soil and amend it with some dry ground. 

How Do You Prevent Mold & Mildew Problems In Hydrangeas? 

1. Choose The Right Setting

Hydrangeas can do pretty well in the shade, but it’s best if you can provide full morning sun. Avoid settings that receive harsh afternoon sunlight. 

Remember to plant your hydrangeas on a bit of a rise (or in a raised bed) so that excess water can runoff. 

Dried hydrangea bloom with multicolored petals.Pin
Photo Credit: Instagram @cg_propertycare

2. Plant Or Replant At The Right Time

The springtime is the best time to plant or move hydrangeas. Please wait until all danger of frost has passed and place your plant in its ideal setting during its time of most active growth. 

If you must move a mature plant, you can move it in the fall after it has finished blooming, but it’s best to move in the springtime before the plant starts to bloom. 

3. Provide The Right Kind Of Soil

Hydrangeas are like rich, well-draining soil with plenty of organic matter (e.g., peat moss or bark). You don’t want to use soil with lots of nitrogen, so if you use a mix with animal manure, make sure it is well-aged manure. 

Add some coarse sand and pea gravel to the mix if the soil you have retains too much water. 

Decaying hydrangea petals with intricate veins.Pin
Photo Credit: Instagram @lmbringer

4. Water The Right Way

Correct watering will help you prevent mold and mildew problems and problems with slugs and snails. 

You’ll know your hydrangeas need watering if the leaves droop without losing color or showing signs of disease. If this happens, increase your watering a bit. Otherwise, maintain a watering schedule and then allow the soil to dry before the next watering. 

Use a drip irrigation system, or lay the end of your hose next to your plant with the water trickling to provide intense, occasional watering. The best time to water is early morning or late afternoon. 

5. Fertilize Correctly

Hungry Hydrangeas bloom more and better. Be careful not to provide too much fertilizer. A light feeding in the spring and another in the autumn should be plenty.

If you notice that the plants’ central leaves become yellow after blooming, you need to apply a dose of fast-acting fertilizer.

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