Fading hydrangea colors


Emma

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Hi there!
I have some potted hydrangeas on my patio (I live in an apartment with no yard) and I have noticed the colors have faded from the bright purple and blue shades to pale blue and green.
My patio faces west and is covered, so it is shaded most of the day until around 3 PM to sunset. It's at this time I get pretty direct sunlight. I placed them in an area that gets maybe 3 to 4 hours of direct sunlight because I was worried they will burn.

My question is, is the color fading due to lack of sunlight? If I move them to a sunnier location, will the color come back this season, or will I have to wait for next year?

Thanks!
 
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My daughter in Raleigh had one that was in total shade. It thrived for years but the flowers never had brilliant color. Hers was in the ground and grew like a weed so she never minded bland colors. That also may have been that plants natural color.
 

Emma

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My daughter in Raleigh had one that was in total shade. It thrived for years but the flowers never had brilliant color. Hers was in the ground and grew like a weed so she never minded bland colors. That also may have been that plants natural color.
Interesting! I am thinking too much shade could be why mine are fading as well.
They're doing well otherwise.
I am attaching pictures of them before and after. They look even more pale green today. I think I'll try to experiment with moving them to a slightly sunnier spot...
IMG_20180417_130345.jpg
IMG_20180426_124012.jpg
 
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Hydrangeas can change colour based on the pH of the soil; acidic = blue flowers, alkaline = pink. You could use a soil test kit to find out the pH of your soil, that may help explain the change in colour. Do you water them with tap water or rain water? If you use hard water that can affect the pH of the soil.
 

Emma

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Hydrangeas can change colour based on the pH of the soil; acidic = blue flowers, alkaline = pink. You could use a soil test kit to find out the pH of your soil, that may help explain the change in colour. Do you water them with tap water or rain water? If you use hard water that can affect the pH of the soil.
I use tap water. Would that wash away the color that quickly? It has been a couple weeks.
Would any changes bring the color back this season? Or would I have to wait until next year?
 
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Would any changes bring the color back this season? Or would I have to wait until next year?

The colour of hydrangea flowers tend to fade as the season goes on, so you may not see any changes to established blooms - I may be wrong though. Personally I'm not a fan of creating artificial environments for plants - if your water is alkaline, they you'll be fighting a constant battle if you want blue flowers.
 
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Emma

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The colour of hydrangea flowers tend to fade as the season goes on, so you may not see any changes to established blooms - I may be wrong though. Personally I'm not a fan of creating artificial environments for plants - if your water is alkaline, they you'll be fighting a constant battle if you want blue flowers.
Interesting. I didn't expect them to fade this soon, since it's only spring here and this variety claims to last all summer long.
I wonder if using a filter for the water would help...?
 
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I wonder if using a filter for the water would help...?

A water filter should help neutralise the pH of the water, if it needs neutralising. So far we're just speculating, I think your best option would be to get a pH test kit and check your soil and water to see whether there's an issue (y)
 
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Emma

Recreational bird watcher and novice gardener
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Central NC
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A water filter should help neutralise the pH of the water, if it needs neutralising. So far we're just speculating, I think your best option would be to get a pH test kit and check your soil and water to see whether there's an issue (y)
I'll do that. I never thought water could be part of the issue!
 

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