The garden, immersed in the colors of the luxurious hydrangea Pinky Winky, is fascinating at first sight. Many landscape designers rightly believe that this elegant shrub, decorated with placers of white-pink fragrant flowers, is able to radically transform any homestead territory. Consider who the Pinky Winky variety of hydrangeas is, what are the conditions for their cultivation, how to properly propagate these plants and take care of them.
Pinky Winky panicle hydrangea is a beautifully flowering perennial shrub whose height can reach 2–2.5 meters. The plant has a compact rounded crown, elastic and strong branches, directed upwards. During flowering, on the gray-brown shoots of hydrangeas of this variety, lush cone-shaped inflorescences (panicles) are formed, covered with small fragrant flowers.
Initially, the flowers have a white and beige color, over time changing to saturated pink. The average length of inflorescences in hydrangeas of this variety is about 30 centimeters.
Many plant gardeners do not prune dry inflorescences of plants. In the cold season, they give the flying bushes a very original look.
The bush is covered with large juicy green leaves of an elliptical shape, with a pointed top. In the fall, the pinky winky hydrangea foliage acquires a reddish hue, which gives the plant a special decorative effect. The popularity of this hydrangea among gardeners and landscape designers is due to its abundant, continuous and long flowering. Flowering begins in the second half of June and lasts until October.
For hydrangeas of the described variety, intense growth rates are characteristic. Under favorable conditions, shoots of shrubs grow by 20–35 centimeters throughout the year. In view of this feature, plants require periodic pruning.
Important! The root system of these perennials is superficial, well-branched. This feature causes an increased need for hydrangeas in frequent and regular watering.
Hydrangeas of the Pinky Winky variety are considered to be rather demanding plants. Their health, appearance and quality of flowering largely depend on the conditions in which they are grown. When planning to plant this beautifully flowering shrub on the site, you should be responsible for choosing a planting location, and also take into account the plant's requirements for soil characteristics and lighting.
Site selection and soil preparation
In choosing a place for planting hydrangeas, one should give preference to moderately lit corners of the garden. It is allowed to plant them in light partial shade. It is undesirable to choose open areas for planting, where the plants will be in direct sunlight all day. Under the scorching sun, the leaves and flowers of hydrangeas quickly burn out, as a result of which the bushes lose their attractiveness. With a severe lack of sunlight, plants will slowly grow and develop worse. In addition, the lack of lighting will negatively affect the quality and duration of their flowering. Growing in strong shade, shrubs will quickly lose their decorative effect.
The best place for planting hydrangeas are those corners of the garden in which plants will be protected from direct sunlight. These may be places with a slight tenuous shadow falling from trees or buildings. It is important to consider the type and parameters of soil on the site. Hydrangeas, like most other garden crops, prefer acidic, slightly acidic and neutral soils with a high humus content.
Heavy alkaline soils with high clay content are not suitable for planting. Although these plants prefer moist soils, they should not be planted in places with high groundwater levels. In such areas, hydrangeas are often affected by root rot and die.
Air and temperature
One of the features of panicled hydrangeas is their gas resistance. The ability of these perennials to withstand gas pollution can be used both in urban landscaping and in the design of plots located in areas with adverse ecology. At the same time, these flowering plants do not tolerate drafts. For this reason, experienced gardeners recommend placing them in windproof areas where they will be protected from strong winds.
Another important feature of the hydrangeas of this variety is frost resistance. These plants are able to tolerate a decrease in air temperature to -25– -26 ° C without any unpleasant consequences.
This quality of hydrangeas allows them to be grown not only in the warm southern latitudes, but also in the regions of the middle zone with a harsh climate.
How to plant?
Pinky Winky hydrangea seedlings with a closed root system are allowed to be planted in open ground from spring to autumn. Planting of young plants with an open root system is carried out only in the spring. The experienced gardeners claim that spring is the most suitable time for planting young Pinky Winky hydrangeas.
Plants planted in the spring, safely take root in a new place until the cold weather and easier to tolerate wintering. Preparing for planting Pinky Winky hydrangeas provides for the preliminary arrangement of planting pits. The recommended depth of the pits is 0.5 meters, and the diameter is 0.6 meters. The distance between the pits should be at least 1.5 meters.
At the next stage, the preparation of nutritious soil mixture is carried out to fill the pits. The soil mixture is prepared from humus, peat, sand. In addition, it is recommended to add store nutrient soil to the soil mixture intended for growing hydrangeas, rhododendrons or azaleas. Before planting, they carefully examine young plants, slightly shorten long shoots, and remove damaged and dry root fragments. Places of damage and cuts are treated with crushed charcoal.
Then, holding the seedling vertically, place it in a pit, carefully straighten the roots and fill them with nutritious soil mixture. During the filling of the planting pit, make sure that the root neck of the plant is at the same level with the surface of the earth. After filling the pit, the nutrient soil is carefully rammed with the palms of the hands.
The planted bush is abundantly watered, trying not to erode the ground, after which the trunk circle is mulched. As mulch use straw, wood shavings or humus leaf. Within a few days after planting, hydrangea is regularly, but moderately watered, which will speed up the process of its adaptation to new conditions.
How to care?
Non-compliance with the recommendations for the care of Pinky Winky hydrangeas is the main reason for the weakening of their health. In order for the plants to feel good, to bloom profusely and for a long time, they need to provide the following conditions:
- regular watering;
- timely fertilizer application;
- forming clippings;
- loosening and mulching the soil around the bushes.
In addition, young hydrangeas of this variety need competent preparation for winter. Despite frost resistance, these perennials can suffer if the air temperature drops below -25 ° C.
Pinky Winky hydrangeas are watered regularly, since a lack of moisture negatively affects the quality of their flowering. In spring and autumn, watering is carried out once every 10-14 days, in the summer - once a week. If the summer turned out to be hot and arid, the plants are watered 2 times in 7-8 days.
For irrigation use warm, settled water. After the procedure, the surface of the earth in the near-stem circle is loosened loosely and mulched with straw, peat or wood shavings. When watering, a stream of water is directed to the very base of the bush. Water the plants in the morning or evening hours, when the sun is least active.
These flowering perennials are recommended to be fed at least 4 times during the growing season. Regular fertilizer application will provide lush, abundant and continuous flowering of hydrangeas.
- The first feeding is carried out in early spring, when the plants begin to wake up after winter. During this period, they are fed organic - a solution of bird droppings (1 liter per bucket of water) or rotted cow manure.
- The second time the bushes are fed during the formation of the buds. At this stage, phosphorus-potassium complexes are used.
- The third top dressing is carried out during the flowering period. At this time, the bushes are fed with complex mineral fertilizers. So, very good results at this stage allows you to get a liquid fertilizer "Fertika Crystal for azaleas and hydrangeas."
- For the fourth time, plants are fed in late summer or early fall. Complex fertilizers designed specifically for hydrangeas are used as top dressing.
Intensive growth of shrubs often leads to the loss of their decorativeness. To prevent this, it is necessary to regularly trim the plants.
- The first pruning of hydrangeas is carried out in early spring (before the start of sap flow), when the kidneys begin to swell on them. During this period, all old, damaged, deformed shoots are removed, cutting them off at the very base. Young healthy shoots shorten up to 5 buds, counting from the base. From mature shoots leave only a small portion 5–8 centimeters long.
- Autumn pruning is carried out 2 weeks before the final dressing. The procedure is carried out at an air temperature of no higher than + 10 ° C. At this stage, weakened, damaged and excess shoots are removed. And also during the procedure, dried inflorescences are cut off. These manipulations help preserve the strength of the plant, which he will need for flowering next year.
Young plants (up to 3 years) require shelter for the winter. So that hydrangeas do not suffer from severe frosts, their bushes are pulled together with a rope, bent to the ground, pinned with brackets and covered with burlap. The earth around the bush is loosened and covered with a layer of mulch 15–20 centimeters thick.
Propagation of hydrangeas of the Pinky Winky variety is carried out using layering and cuttings. Both methods are quite effective and easy to implement.
- To cultivate hydrangea by layering, it is necessary in spring or autumn to determine the strongest, healthy and elastic shoot on it, bend it to the ground and pin it with a wooden bracket. A layer of fertile soil should be poured over the staples. Throughout the season, the place where the shoot is pinned should be regularly watered. Rooting layering usually occurs throughout the year. After a year, the rooted shoot can be dug up and transplanted to a permanent place.
- Another method of breeding hydrangeas involves the use of cuttings. They are harvested during spring or autumn pruning. For rooting, cuttings using at least 3 internodes are used. They are planted in containers filled with loose and fertile soil mixtures. Before planting, the cuttings are kept in a solution of the root stimulant (“Kornevin”) for 10-12 hours.
Cuttings are planted at a slight angle, dipping them into the ground by about two-thirds. After landing, an improvised greenhouse is constructed above the container from a cropped plastic bottle or plastic film mounted on a frame support. Rooting cuttings are regularly watered, and in the greenhouse they maintain high humidity. It takes 3-4 weeks to root the cuttings .
Diseases and Pests
The main cause of hydrangea damage by pests and pathogens is the failure to follow plant care recommendations. As a result of illiterate actions by the gardener, the immunity of plants weakens, they begin to hurt or be attacked by pests.
- As a result of too frequent watering, hydrangeas often develop root and gray rot. Their characteristic features are gray and brown-brown spots on the leaves. The treatment involves the removal of the affected parts of the plant and its complete treatment with fungicidal preparations (Fundazole).
- Dense plants and light deficiency are the main causes of spotting . With this disease, black, brown, yellow spots form on the hydrangea leaves. Treatment involves the removal of diseased leaves and spraying the bush with preparations containing copper.
- The discoloration of the leaves or the appearance of brown small spots on them indicates that hydrangea was affected by a spider mite. And also the presence of this parasite is indicated by small accumulations of cobwebs on the shoots and leaves. To destroy the tick, the affected bushes are treated with soap and insecticides (Fitoverm).
- Aphids are a malicious pest of hydrangeas that feeds on their cellular juices. Colonies of this parasite can be found on the inside of the leaves. To combat the pest, spraying with soapy water and treatment with Aktara and Akarin preparations are used.
- Thick and groomed hydrangea bushes are often invaded by slugs. These pests eat up the foliage of perennials and the tops of their shoots. The slugs are collected by hand and destroyed. Additionally, molluscicides (limacids) are laid out next to the plant - aggressive chemicals that destroy these pests.
For proper care, pruning and reproduction of panicled hydrangea, see below.