Drying Limelight Hydrangeas
I grew up in the mountains where hydrangeas thrive but I learned quickly that they can be difficult to keep alive in the Lowcountry. Some people are hydrangea whisperers and myself? Not so much. I killed three different bushes before I found the perfect variety for my location, Limelight Hydrangeas.
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Limelight hydrangeas produce massive blooms and they do very well in our super hot summers. I have seen them do very well in colder climates also! Ours have thrived in the full sun where other varieties of hydrangeas would wilt away.
Why am I telling you all about these wonderful flowers? Not only are they very easy to maintain, aka keep alive, they are gorgeous for your decor. Before Hurricane Florence came our way, I snipped several blooms and brought them in to dry. I will share this easy process with you now.
First, you will need to wait until early fall and when they are a pretty green color. My hydrangeas have already turned green once and when I trimmed them back in July, they produced another set of growth and beautiful blooms. Start by touching the flower on the bush and if it feels almost like paper, it is the perfect bloom to trim.
Do not cut them for drying purposes when they are fresh white blooms. You can see a few of the white blooms above, and they will not dry well using this method as seen below.
I keep them in a 5 gallon bucket of water on our shaded porch until I am ready to finish the drying process. This time it took two full days because I was trying to complete the task during nap time, along with packing for a possible hurricane evacuation, and prepping for a yard sale. I would not recommend leaving them like this on your porch for a long period of time.
Preparing to Dry
Trim leaves from the stem and place the cuttings in an inch or so of water, barely covering the end of the stem. Do not overcrowd each clipping. I prefer placing three or four clippings per vase to allow for air flow.
Leave Them Alone
This is the most crucial part in case you have been skimming this blog post. The most important step of all. Leave them alone. You read that right. Let me put out there again. N E G L E C T them. Walk away from the hydrangeas and don’t look back. Seriously that easy. They will miraculously dry on their own without any effort from you!
Perfect for Centerpieces
I love placing these in a big bowl and displaying them as a table centerpiece. You can put them in a dough bowl. They make awesome wreaths. The ideas are limitless and I will save that for another post.
I purchased my Limelights at Lowe’s Home Improvement and on Amazon here. They are all thriving!
I have linked videos to my story highlights on Instagram also. Happy gardening friends!