First garden star I see in July?
Hydrangea paniculata ‘Great Star’
Beautiful and lacy, which is what we expect from modern panicle-type hydrangeas, and Great Star is extremely yummy with it’s incredibly huge florets. A stellar addition to any planting from July to September, their airier than usual form is a natural asset.
Most Hydrangea paniculatas have blooms formed of hundreds really small florets. While they are pretty, it takes the entire mass of florets to really make a statement in your garden or landscaping. Great Star doesn’t need weeks after the blooming starts to exhibit a punch. With individual florets up to 4-inches wide. You won’t have to get next to the plant to enjoy the flower show from start to finish. They will be showy from the street and out your windows.
The long-loved Pee Gee Hydrangea, while having some good qualities, has massive blooms created from tightly clumped small florets, and stems that can’t support the huge bomb flowers it creates when they’re wet. Many old-fashioned hydrangeas, like old peonies that have massive blooms, just don’t have stems that can support the flower weight every day during the bloom season. Part of the problem is flower density, and part of it is stem stiffness. Irrigation and showers send the those long planted shrub or tree stems into sagging mode. At which point many age-old plants lose a great deal of their attractiveness.
You need something better, and the Hydrangea paniculatas bred today will all have superior stem qualities. The breeders know that we want better form than the plants in your grandmother’s garden. Hydrangea ‘Great Star’ has those improved, modern growth qualities you seek.
Full Sun Hydrangeas
All Hydrangea paniculatas can deal with full sun exposure. Unlike mopheads and lacecaps, they are also reliable bloomers. No, they don’t come in the pinks and blues that hydrangeas are so coveted for, but they do change colors as the age blooms, from white to pink and eventually morphing into red tones before turning into papery dried flowers on the plant.
Great Star Hydrangea loves the sun. It’s a shrub that is just as impressive in the garden as it is in the landscape. If a hydrangea tree fits your plan better than a shrub, like all paniculatas, it can also fit that space too. It’s all in how the plant is trained from a young age as to what it will become as it matures.
Cold climate gardeners will love the rugged qualities of Great Star Hydrangeas. They are hardy in zones 4-7, as well as being deer resistant plants, and rabbit resistant too. Thanks to their woody stems they thrive in average soil and are far more drought tolerant than other types of hydrangeas, though they perform best with consistent moisture.
Super Showy Ornamental Plants
Great Star is showier than most Hydrangea paniculata plants, because of its huge blooms. As a cluster, the fully opened bomb flowers are quite an arresting display. It’s one of the qualities that made them eligible for the First Editions Collection of plants. They are also super easy to grow, and have excellent pest and disease resistance.
If you know what you’re doing, it’s very easy to take an immature hydrangea paniculata plant and grow it into an impressive shrub or tree-form. Like the species, these hydrangeas will start off being leggy with sparse stems, but as with all other kinds of plants, the mass on top of the soil can only be as large as the root system can support.