These are evergreen climbing plants with white, pink or scarlet flowers, borne in summer. Plant in early spring in a compost of equal parts loam and peat, with an addition of charcoal and sand. They like a fair amount of water and a temperature of 65 to 75 degrees. Tako cuttings of the previous years shoots in spring or summer. They may also be increased by layering in spring or summer.
Hydrangea (. hortensia). Although these plants will grow well in the open ground in mild districts, they are more popularly grown in the greenhouse, where they are excellent decoration plants, and given a little heat, they will give better results.
The flowers of H. hortensia and its varieties are very beautiful, and are produced in blue, white, and various shades of pink. They will thrive well in a compost of 3 parts loam, 1 part peat, 1 part leaf-mould and £ part sand. They should be potted quite firmly and ample drainage should be allowed. Before potting in February or March, these plants should be pruned right back, and as soon as growth commences they should receive plenty of water until October, when their resting period begins.
When the flower buds appear, a weak dose of liquid manure will be of great assistance, and finer blooms will be obtained.
Although the natural colour of Hydrangeas is pink, blue varieties are grown, and these are obtained when desired by watering with a blueing powder. This can be obtained from nurserymen and should be applied as directed, during the summer.
Plants may be increased by cuttings taken in spring or autumn. These should be started into growth in an even temperature of 40 degrees.
The plants appreciate attention to the essential points of cultivation, and if care is taken, the amateur gardener will be well repaid in the large trusses of flowers that are produced.
Among the modern varieties of H. hor tertsia, the following would make a useful collection for the amateurs greenhouse:
Madame Moullilre, white.
Thos. Hogg, white and tricolor, leaves variegated.