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What To Plant With Hydrangeas

Hydrangeas are a favorite for many gardeners, with their stunning blooms and range of colors. But what about adding some pizzazz to their solo act? Picking the perfect companion plants for your hydrangeas can elevate your garden design and create a thriving ecosystem. Here are some fantastic options to consider :

Sunny Sidekicks for Sun-Drenched Hydrangeas:

  • Daylilies (Hemerocallis): These vibrant perennials are sunshine superstars, just like your hydrangeas. They come in a dazzling array of colors, from classic yellows and oranges to fiery reds and even bi-colored blooms. Daylilies flower prolifically throughout the summer, ensuring a constant burst of color alongside your hydrangeas. Their clump-forming habit also helps retain moisture in the soil, a big plus for hydrangeas.
  • Cranesbill (Geranium): Don’t let the name fool you, cranesbills aren’t your grandma’s geraniums! These low-growing charmers boast beautiful, often scalloped foliage in shades of green, burgundy, or even variegated. They sprawl delightfully around the base of your hydrangeas, adding a touch of color and helping suppress pesky weeds. Cranesbills come in a wide range of flower colors as well, from soft pinks and purples to vibrant blues, so you can find the perfect match for your hydrangea’s hue.
  • Alliums (Allium): Looking for something a little different? Alliums, with their round, purple flower heads held aloft on tall stalks, add a touch of whimsy and architectural interest to your sunny hydrangea bed. They’re also a favorite among pollinators like bees and butterflies, adding an extra buzz to your garden. Just be aware that alliums have onion-scented foliage, so plant them strategically to avoid overpowering your other scents.

Shady Sanctuary Companions:

  • Hostas (Hosta): The undisputed king (or maybe queen!) of shade gardens, hostas are a perfect match for hydrangeas that prefer cooler spots. Hostas come in a seemingly endless variety of sizes, shapes, and foliage colors. From giant varieties with blue-green leaves to miniature hostas with chartreuse or variegated markings, there’s a hosta to suit any taste. Their bold, lush foliage creates a stunning contrast with the delicate blooms of hydrangeas, adding depth and texture to your shady haven.
  • Ferns: These graceful plants bring a touch of magic to any shade garden. Ferns come in a wide range of shapes and sizes, from delicate maidenhair ferns to bold ostrich ferns. Choose varieties that prefer similar moisture levels to your hydrangeas, such as Japanese painted ferns or lady ferns. Ferns add a sense of airiness and tranquility to your planting scheme, creating a perfect backdrop for your hydrangeas.
  • Astilbes (Astilbe): These shade-loving perennials are a true delight, with their feathery plumes of flowers that come in soft pinks, lavenders, and even whites. Astilbes bloom in late spring and early summer, creating a romantic atmosphere alongside your hydrangeas. They thrive in moist, well-drained soil, just like hydrangeas, making them ideal companions.

Bonus Buddies for All Hydrangeas:

  • Ornamental Grasses: These low-maintenance beauties add movement and textural interest to your garden beds. They sway gently in the breeze, creating a sense of dynamism. Try maiden grass (Miscanthus sinensis) for a tall, feathery accent, or Japanese forest grass (Hakonechloa macra) for a cascading effect.
  • Coral Bells (Heuchera): These shade-tolerant gems offer stunning foliage in a kaleidoscope of colors and textures. From deep burgundy to lime green, and even with variegated patterns, coral bells add year-round appeal to your hydrangea bed. Their compact size makes them perfect for edging or filling in gaps around taller plants like hydrangeas.

With these fantastic companion plants, you can create a dazzling garden design that complements your hydrangeas and keeps your garden looking beautiful all season long. So get planting, and watch your hydrangeas and their new BFFs thrive together!

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