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New hydrangea book –
Late nineteenth century seed company owner James Vick (1818-1882) wrote about the hydrangea in his magazine Vick’s Illustrated Monthly.
In 1879 he said, “The hydrangea is an old garden favorite that we are all familiar with.”
Vick was right that the hydrangea has been around for a long time and we all know a lot about it.
However with newer varieties or cultivars appearing each spring, it might be worthwhile to learn more about this famous and important shrub. Vick wrote in his magazine, “This hardy Hydrangea [ H. Paniculata] is the most useful plant that has been introduced for years.”
Now there is a new book to teach us even more about the hydrangea.
Garden writer and lecturer Lorraine Ballato has written a new book called Success with Hydrangeas: A Gardener’s Guide.
Lorraine spells out the varieties or cultivars of the hydrangea along with their different demands of sun, water, fertilizer, and pruning.
The photos in the book are worth its price. They clearly capture the beauty of this popular shurb in so many shapes and forms, planted both in containers and in beds.
I enjoyed the glossary of terms at the end of the book as well as a list of gardens to visit where you can see hydrangeas in bloom.
Vick often wrote about Hydrangea paniculata. He said, “It is superb, with its score of creamy panicles of flowers, some ten inches in length. I introduced this fine shrub here three years, and its greatly admired by every one.”
Lorraine Ballado’s new book provides updated and useful information about today’s hydrangea.
I particulary liked that she focuses on the five most common species: H. macrophylla, H. quercifolia, H. petiolaris, H. arborescens, and, of course, the popular H. paniculata. This helps the reader with more direct examples and illustrations.