Hydrangea quercifolia Little Honey ('Brihon') (PBR)
- available to order from summer
- 2 litre pot
- Position: partial shade, avoiding midday sun
- Soil: moist, well-drained, moderately fertile, humus-rich soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: July to September
- Hardiness: fully hardy
A fantastic new hydrangea, with very decorative oak-like leaves. They emerge in spring a bright golden yellow and this colour persists into summer before gradually fading to a chartreuse-green. The large cones of pretty white flowers that appear in summer are the icing on the cake. In autumn the leaves turn dramatic shades of coral, pink, red and burgundy as the flowers slowly fade. This fabulous shrub is perfect if you want a long season of interest as it gives its best for most of the year. Originally discovered as a sport from Hydrangea quercifolia 'Pee Wee' this too is a slow-growing variety that stays compact and does not normally require pruning. It's best in the middle of a partially shady border, and associates beautifully with most other hydrangeas. It also contrasts well with hot pinks, oranges and vibrant purples.
- Garden care: Hydrangeas do not like to dry out. In dry weather, soak the roots with a hose and the plant will usually recover. Remove faded flowerheads in spring after the danger of frosts, cutting back the flowered stems to a strong pair of buds. Take out misplaced or diseased shoots. Mulch young plants with a well-rotted manure or compost in spring. Best planted in a shady or partially shady border as the leaves can scorch in full sun.