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Types of hydrangeas

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Hydrangea paniculata 'Mega Pearl'
Photo: Sylvie Maurice
Species Light level Hardiness Maintenance or rejuvenation pruning
H. arborescens Sun or partial shade Zone 3
  • Annual cutback: cut the stems close to the ground (10-15 cm) in the spring or fall
H. paniculata Sun or partial shade

Zone 3 or 4 (depending on the cultivar)

  • Not needed often, as required.
  • Shrub branches: cut stem length by one-third or one-half.
  • For a shrub branching from the base: rejuvenate gradually by removing one-third of the old branches (5 years) or rejuvenate by cutting all the branches back to the ground (10-15 cm) in the spring or fall.
H. macrophylla Partial shade Zone 5 (roots) Zone 6 (stems and flower buds)
  • For cultivars that flower on the new annual wood: cut to the ground (8-10 cm) each fall.
  • Cultivars that bloom partially on old and partially on new wood: in autumn, cut the stems by one-third or one-half above a vigorous bud. In the spring, remove the dead wood and frail or elderly stems.
H. serrata Partial shade Zone 5
  • Prune lightly: cut the stems by one-third or one-half. Spring cleaning.
H. petiolaris Partial shade Zone 5
  • Prune lightly: cut the stems by one-third or one-half. Spring cleaning.
H. quercifolia Sun or partial shade Zone 5 (roots) Zone 6 (stems and flower buds) 
  • Prune lightly: cut the stems by one-third or one-half. Spring cleaning.

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