Hydrangea arborescens
Smooth Hydrangea

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Butterfly FriendlyPart ShadeFall Color
Smooth Hydrangea
Hydrangea arborescens

Unlike most selections, this species offers mostly fertile white flowers in flat heads blooming in July and August that provide nectar for insects and butterflies.  It's perfect for planting along a wood line or massed to form a haven for birds and woodland critters with its dense, bulky form.

  • Flowers are great for cut and dried arrangements
  • Excellent for naturalizing in moist or dry soils
  • Large leaves offer great cover for small critters
  • Easy to grow with very long bloom season
  • Loves part shade but tolerates full sun

Native Range

Wooded slopes, ravines and stream banks from New York to Ohio, Missouri, and Oklahoma, south to Georgia, Louisiana, and Arkansas

Map Credit: The Biota of North America 
MAP KEY: Green (native), Teal (native, adventive), Blue (present), Yellow (present & rare), Red (extinct), Orange (Species extirpated)


Interesting Facts

If you garden in the woods, consider leaving downed trees, piles of brush with large leaves and jumbled piles of rocks to provide shelter for all kinds of wildlife. 



Grows best in average to medium moisture, well-drained soil in part shade although it is quite adaptable to different soil types except for very dry. Tolerates more sun in the northern part of its range. Blooms on new wood so you may cut it back in late winter to 1-2’ to keep the shrub looking young and vigorous. 


Mature Size: 3-5ft. Tall x 4-6ft. Wide

Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Sun Exposure: Sun to part shade

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