The 4 Best Fertilizers for Hydrangeas - In-depth guide with advice and more (2023)


Fertilizers can be described as naturally produced elements that are added to all types of soil to provide nutrients to plants.

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Fertilizers come in a variety of forms, both natural and artificial.


Recent fertilizers typically have three essential elements

  • Nitrogen
  • Potassium
  • Phosphor
  • Dust off rocks for extra nutrients.

fertilizer in many ways. Fertilizers can be in dried form and in liquid form. Note that there are other types of applications besides the above.

(Video) 🌿Top 5 Best Fertilizer For Hydrangeas - (2020 Guide & Reviews)💚

Do I have to apply fertilizer?

As mentioned above, fertilizer is naturally occurring or artificial. Although farmers have historically grown their crops without fertilizer, that doesn't mean fertilizer is lacking. Nature will have a hard time replacing minerals or nutrients that plants have left in the soil.

Occasionally, important minerals and nutrients are also leached from the soil and plants during harvesting of the plants. The country would have lost most of its nutrients after the harvest season and needs to add fertilizers to improve the quality of the soil. Otherwise, the next farming season will see a huge drop in crop yield. Of course, these fertilizers not only nourish the soil and plants after harvest, but also end up on people's tables or as food for other animals.

International Fertilizer Union

These fertilizers also contain nutrients that are beneficial to both humans and animals. The International Fertilizer Association, commonly known as IFA, states that a staggering eighty-five percent (85%) of soil samples tested worldwide lack the element nitrogen, which is one of the nutrients essential to the healthy growth of plants and plants cannot get this nitrogen from the soil absorb air.

Therefore, their only source of nitrogen is the soil. They also found that seventy-three (73%) of these soil samples lack phosphorus, while fifty-five (55%) lack potassium.

Potassium:It is found in the soil but is far out of reach of the roots of plants. This vital nutrient is buried almost a kilometer deep in the soil.

Phosphor:It is also another naturally occurring element in soil, but in certain rock types. Plants do not have access to these as the plants must be water soluble. Hence the importance of phosphorus-based fertilizers, as plants can extract from the soil.

types of fertilizers

Fertilizers come in a variety of forms that best suit the soil they are intended for. Four forms or types of fertilizers are available for cultivation in agriculture. Any experienced farmer or gardener knows the value of good fertilizers.

Being able to identify the type of fertilizer that meets the needs of specific plants will undoubtedly allow your yard or garden to reach its maximum potential. Below are the types of fertilizers that exist.

(Video) Pruning & Fertilizing My Hydrangeas! ✂️🌿💚// Garden Answer

Inorganic and organic fertilizers


As the name suggests, this type of fertilizer comes from organic or naturally occurring sources. These sources mainly contain manure, various types of compost and products of animals and plants. This type of fertilizer is perfect, a typical example of nature doing its thing. They are very nutritious for both the soil and the plants.

Approximate nutrient levels are usually printed on the bags as there is no natural way to determine the number of nutrients contained. Because this type of fertilizer is naturally occurring, like most natural things, it takes a while to show its effects.

Therefore, it is mainly used by farmers to develop fertile and healthy soils over long periods of time. A major benefit of organic fertilizer is that it's easy to make at home.


On the other hand, we have inorganic fertilizers. Inorganic fertilizers contain chemicals that contain the necessary elements that support plant growth. Unlike organic fertilizer, inorganic fertilizer is best when you plan to speed things up in your yard or garden. You are the best when your harvest is growing.

Nitrogen fertilizers

The element or nutrient responsible for plant growth is nitrogen. The importance of the element nitrogen in fertilizers is good because it plays an important role in the middle phase of the life of various plants.

Nitrogen-based fertilizers are best used when your plants need to grow healthy, strong and produce new leaves.


The nutrient phosphorus is necessary for plants throughout their lives. The nutrient is responsible for strengthening the roots of plants along with their stems. Using phosphorus-based fertilizers usually gives a boost to flowering, seed production, and ultimately fruit.

(Video) Easy guide to Pruning and Fertilizing Hydrangeas

This nutrient is so necessary that a lack of phosphorus will most likely lead to stunted growth. Like organic fertilizer, phosphate fertilizer works overtime, so it's not a bad idea to apply it to your soil to enrich it before planting your plants.

potassium fertilizer

The nutrient responsible for your plants developing deeper, healthier, and more robust roots is known as potassium. Potassium is an essential nutrient as it allows your plants to thrive even when they are lacking in other nutrients. Potassium is also vital to the process of photosynthesis. Fertilizers made from potassium can also slow down or completely kill any form of pest that might infest your farmland garden.

When applying potassium fertilizer, it is advisable to apply it close to the plant roots. A lack of potassium in your plants will cause discoloration on the leaf edges and eventually die if this persists.

forms of fertilizers

The above types of fertilizers are produced in different forms

  • the powder form
  • the liquid form
  • the ground form, also known as the granular form

The powder form

The powdered fertilizer has a water requirement to enable its productivity and is used with your hands. Water is necessary to aid absorption.

The liquid form

The liquid fertilizer is quite similar to the water in your yard, which makes it very convenient because, just like the powder fertilizer, it can be hosed to the surface of the soil in a more granular way.

Die Granularform

The granules are rich in nutrients, so they will eventually be absorbed by the soil once you water the plant. Fertilizers are important adjuncts in modern agriculture.

What are hydrangeas?

Where are hydrangeas found?

The hydrangea, commonly known as hydrangea, is a flowering plant native to Asia and America. It is known to be one of the most prominent species in diversity in the eastern part of Asia.

How do you look?

They are primarily cut shrubs averaging about one to three (1-3) meters in height on average. These species vary because some grow up to a hundred feet tall as climbers, so climb along with trees. They are also known to be very tasty. They are also beautiful plants as their colors vary from pink to blue alongside other shades of purple which makes them stand out.

(Video) Spring Hydrangea Care - 5 Tips for Happy Hydrangeas

Hydrangeas with fertilizers

Hydrangeas thrive when properly fertilized during times like summer. It is recommended to use ground fertilizer or granular fertilizer rich in phosphorus. Hydrangeas are known to respond very positively to holly clay fertilizer, as hydrangeas love acid-based fertilizers. The best fertilizers for blue hydrangeas are the Vitax Conifer alongside the shrub fertilizer.

Homemade Fertilizer

While it's good to buy some of these fertilizers from these companies, you can also make your own fertilizer at home, which is known as homemade fertilizer. Making this homemade fertilizer for hydrangeas is as simple as adding a small amount of vinegar to the root of the plant, a rich form of potassium and other elements like phosphorus.

Phosphorus increases soil acidity, which is popular with hydrangeas.

The colors of the hydrangeas

The colors of hydrangeas are affected by the nature of the soil they are planted in, with the exception of those that flower white or green. These are the main colors that the heart of the earth cannot change. Blue hydrangeas indicate the acidity of the soil, just as a soil base in nature changes the color of hydrangeas to pink.

To further analyze the soils that change the color of hydrangeas, various soils with an average pH of 5.5 and less are acidic, causing the hydrangea to change color to blue. Those with an average pH of 7.0 and above are considered basic or alkaline and will color the hydrangeas pink.

hydrangea species

As mentioned above, hydrangeas come in different shapes and types. One of these is known as the limelight hydrangea. This type of hydrangea is fertilized with the Pennington UlttraGreen all-purpose plant fertiliser. Another type of fertilizer that is good for your hydrangea plant is the magic glow hydrangea fertilizer. Fertilize the soil under the hydrangea.

Hydrangeas need to be fertilized in spring, as that is when the plants begin to bloom. Therefore, it gives the plant a head start. Some hydrangea growers have been known to add coffee grounds as fertilizer to their hydrangea plants. Experienced farmers also use coffee grounds to control the growth of unwanted plants or weeds in their gardens. Coffee soil fertilizer for hydrangeas for the soil, or you can mix it up in a compost bin and use it all at once.

Check out oursArticleon Gardening for all the insight you need to have the garden of your dreams.

(Video) Q&A | Soil | Hydrangeas | Fertilizer


What are the fertilizer numbers for hydrangeas? ›

Typically hydrangeas thrive when fed an all-purpose, balanced fertilizer like a 10-10-10 N-P-K or 12-4-8 N-P-K. To increase the size and quantity of hydrangea blooms, consider a fertilizer with more phosphorus.

What time of year do you fertilize hydrangeas? ›

Hydrangeas should be lightly dressed with fast-release fertilizer in March, May, and July. Be sure to spread it around the drip line of the branches and not the base. Water well. If the fertilizer you choose is a slow-release type, remember to lightly cover it with soil to activate the fertilizer.

What is the best fertilizer for endless summer hydrangeas? ›

Fertilize your Endless Summer Hydrangeas in the spring with Holly-tone for blue flowers or Plant-tone and granulated lime for purple to pink flowers.

What is the secret to growing hydrangeas? ›

Most hydrangeas will thrive in fertile, well-draining soils that receive plenty of moisture. Add compost to enrich poor soil. Generally, hydrangeas prefer partial sun. Ideally, they will be given full sun in the morning, followed by some afternoon shade to protect from the hot midday sun.

What helps hydrangeas bloom more? ›

How to Get More Panicle Hydrangea Flowers:
  • Plant panicle hydrangeas in all-day sun or afternoon sun.
  • Water them during a drought, especially if you notice wilting.
  • Add plenty of organic matter (such as compost) around the plant.
  • Limit any drastic pruning to early spring, just before new growth emerges.
Apr 29, 2022

How late can you fertilize hydrangeas? ›

When to Apply Fertilizer. Fertilize hydrangeas twice a year, once in the early spring and again in the early summer. Most people apply fertilizer in May when the plants first start to leaf out. Then, feed them again during the growing season, which is around July.

Can you over fertilize hydrangeas? ›

The first rule of thumb is to NOT over-fertilize your hydrangea plants. We suggest one application of granular fertilizer in spring or early summer, and then follow package instructions afterwards. If you over-fertilize, it can burn the root system of your hydrangea bushes and actually inhibit bloom production.

Is Miracle Grow OK for hydrangeas? ›

Miracle-Gro Water Soluble Bloom Booster Flower Food

This is an all-purpose blossom booster that's suitable for use on a wide variety of perennial and annual blooming plants, including hydrangeas.

Are Epsom salts good for hydrangeas? ›

The short answer is yes it will – Epsom Salts is Magnesium sulfate and Sulfur is the mineral that we apply to the soil to lower the pH. You will also be applying Magnesium which should help enhance the color of your foliage since Magnesium is needed for chlorophyll production.

Is 12 4 8 a good fertilizer? ›

A complete fertilizer, such as 16-4-8, 12-6-6 or 12-4-8, is generally recommended, unless the soil test reveals that phosphorus and potassium are adequate.

Should you cut old blooms off Endless summer hydrangeas? ›

"Bigleaf hydrangeas, such as Endless Summer, should be deadheaded when the first set of flowers sprouts from last year's growth in the spring, as it eliminates the faded flowers before the next flush appears," she explains.

How do you keep Endless summer hydrangeas blooming all summer? ›

How do you keep Endless Summer hydrangeas blooming? The best location to ensure continuous bloom is one where the plant receives morning sun and afternoon dappled shade. In too much sun, they might stop blooming.

What is 10 20 10 fertilizer good for? ›

Summary. Low nitrogen and potassium, in combination with higher levels of phosphorus, make 10-20-10 a great choice for gardeners looking to improve root development, homeowners looking for a better root system in warm-season grasses or someone who is growing a newly established lawn in from seed.

What does vinegar do to hydrangeas? ›

Hydrangea flowers will be pink in alkaline soil, but change to blue in acidic soil. So, mix up some apple cider vinegar and water, and give all the acid-loving plants a treat. Or change colors of your hydrangeas on a whim from pink to blue.

How can I thicken my hydrangeas? ›

As a young plant, it is best to prune or pinch your plant in order to build a full bodied, well-branched plant. Every time you cut off the growing tip of a plant, you get twice as many branches and thus in the long-run, more flowers.

What does baking soda do for hydrangeas? ›

Baking soda is an organic fungicide with anti-fungal properties that can help prevent fungal disease from attacking your hydrangea plants, so it's a good idea to use it every time you water the plant or give them fertilizer.

Should you water hydrangeas every day? ›

The hydrangea should be watered thoroughly at least 3 times a week. Always water the plant all the way around the container, not just in one place. Water should come out the bottom of the pot. Never let it sit in water which will cause the roots to rot away.

Will vinegar help hydrangeas bloom? ›

Some gardeners have started using vinegar to lower their soil pH to change bigleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla) bloom colors. Does this actually work? The short answer is kind of; in theory, it can. But is it your best long-term solution for altering your soil pH?

How do you help a struggling hydrangea? ›

A layer of mulch around the plants will help keep the soil moist. In some situations a soaker hose that is wound around the plants underneath the mulch is a big help for hydrating Hydrangeas. If plants are in hot afternoon sun consider moving them to a location where they get sun in the morning and shade all afternoon.

Is August too late to fertilize hydrangeas? ›

Don't fertilize after August. Fall is the time for hydrangeas to begin preparing for dormancy. Fertilizing at this time may stimulate new growth that will be too tender to withstand the winter. In the South, a late May application and another in July would be about right.

Should I water hydrangeas morning or night? ›

Water your hydrangeas in the morning before the heat of the sun is strong enough to quickly evaporate soil moisture.

Should I fertilize hydrangeas while blooming? ›

If your hydrangeas bloom in late spring and early summer, you want to give the second dose just before they unfold their blooms. The same goes for those that bloom in late summer / early fall – once again giving them their second dose just as they begin to flower.

Is 20 20 20 fertilizer good for hydrangeas? ›

Hydrangeas do well with all-purpose mixes like 10-10-10 or 20-20-20. The upside of choosing this type of mix is that you can use it on most plants in your garden without keeping many different types of fertilizer on hand. Another good mix for Hydrangeas is 15-30-15.

What does an over fertilized hydrangea look like? ›

Symptoms of Over-Fertilization

Stunted growth. excessive growth of foliage with few blossoms. discoloring on the edges of leaves.

How do you perk up planted hydrangeas? ›

But hydrangeas are among the few plants that can draw moisture in through their florets, so it's possible to perk up wilted blooms by completely submerging them in water and letting them sit for a few hours to rehydrate.

Do coffee grounds help hydrangeas grow? ›

Coffee grounds add extra acidity to the soil around hydrangeas. On a chemical level, this increased acidity makes it easier for the plant to absorb naturally occurring aluminum in the dirt. The effect is pretty blue clusters of flowers.

What is the best fertilizer for roses and hydrangeas? ›

The best fertilizer for hydrangeas is a granular (i.e., not liquid) fertilizer formulated for woody plants. We find that a rose fertilizer, like Espoma Rose Tone, is an excellent choice - after all, roses are flowering shrubs, just like hydrangeas are.

How do you enrich soil for hydrangeas? ›

To create rich, well-drained soil for your hydrangeas, add organic compost or aged manure to the soil. Organic matter provides food for beneficial soil microorganisms, which enrich and help aerate the soil. Well-drained soil provides room for hydrangea roots to grow and helps prevent root rot.

Should hydrangeas be cut back in the fall? ›

When to prune? Prune these hydrangeas only after bloom in the summer and not in the fall. Old wood hydrangeas start developing their bloom buds for next year in August and September. If you don't prune your hydrangeas real soon, then it is better to wait until next year.

Does pickle juice help hydrangeas? ›

Use pickle juice in your flower beds to perk up your acid-loving flowers! Flowers such as hydrangea and rhododendron need acidic soil to thrive. And the best part, no toxic chemicals!

Does sugar water help hydrangeas? ›

Add 1/4 cup of sugar to room temperature water. This helps to feed the hydrangeas' stems. Add a few pumps of hand soap to the water. Soap helps to keep bacteria way.

How do you apply Epsom salt to hydrangeas? ›

The Epsom Salt Council ( recommends one tablespoon per nine square feet, applied to the root zone of the shrubs at two- to four-week intervals.

Do hydrangeas need Miracle Gro? ›

To grow hydrangeas in planting beds, focus on improving the native soil. One simple way to do that is to combine equal parts existing soil and Miracle-Gro® Garden Soil for Trees and Shrubs. In warmer regions (zones 7 and warmer), where winter tends to be mild, you can also grow hydrangeas in containers.

Is Miracle Grow good for hydrangeas? ›

Miracle-Gro Water Soluble Bloom Booster Flower Food

This is an all-purpose blossom booster that's suitable for use on a wide variety of perennial and annual blooming plants, including hydrangeas.

Does Epsom salt help hydrangeas bloom? ›

The short answer is yes it will – Epsom Salts is Magnesium sulfate and Sulfur is the mineral that we apply to the soil to lower the pH. You will also be applying Magnesium which should help enhance the color of your foliage since Magnesium is needed for chlorophyll production.

Can I fertilize hydrangeas in the fall? ›

Don't fertilize after August. Fall is the time for hydrangeas to begin preparing for dormancy. Fertilizing at this time may stimulate new growth that will be too tender to withstand the winter.


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