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Hydrangea macrophylla 'Bodensee': spherical with puffy blue flowers
Hydrangea macrophylla is a spherical plant with white, pink or blue flower clusters – the hydrangea! It is a classic plant found in almost every flower garden. The best known of the genus is the garden hydrangea. Our plant of the month is the variety "Bodensee". A deciduous shrub with a closed, evenly growing ball of blossoms that shows off magnificently between June and September – and in blue!
A thirsty diva just to look at
Our plant of the month is easy to care for. Even when it freezes, it can cope with sub – zero temperatures. Its preference for shade also speaks of its ease of care. The only thing it needs is a lot of is low – calcium water, preferably rainwater. The botanical name gives an idea of the plant's thirst. Hydrangea combines the words water and container. The comparatively large leaves (macrophylla) also explain the high water requirement.
In its habitat, the hydrangea also behaves like a diva. It tolerates discreet companion plants, but prefers to be among its own kind and enjoys being a lone star.
Hydrangeas actually have fertile inner flowers. These are surrounded by infertile so – called show flowers that attract pollinating insects. In many species, however, the inflorescences have been completely re – bred to pure show flowers. This makes hydrangeas look even more ostentatious, even though they are completely infertile. Visual consolation: Hydrangea macrophylla "Bodensee" often flowers again in autumn.
Feeling blue? Your hydrangea too
You enjoy a garden hydrangea with blue to violet flowers – and the following season it turns pink? It's all right, no one has secretly changed the plant.
The colouring of hydrangeas depends on the soil conditions. You could say: the more acidic, the bolder the blue. The decisive factors are the pH value and the aluminium content. Aluminium makes the soil acidic.
If you want blue flowers, you can help out by buying special fertilisers or the aluminium salt alum, which is added to the water. But we'll say it right away: not every variety can be turned blue, basically only pink ones. And it can take up to two years. In summary, hydrangeas only shine purple, mauve or blue when: the dye delphinidin is present, the pH value is low (below 5.0) and the soil is acidic – and perhaps only when they want to.