Hydrangea arborescens, Wild or Smooth Hydrangea

Tried and True Native Plant Selections for the Mid-Atlantic

The Smooth or Wild Hydrangea is a fast-growing, deciduous shrub with cane-like branches, large handsome leaves, and a mid-to-late summer show of large flower heads composed of dozens of florets.

Print Version: Hydrangea arborescens, Wild or Smooth HydrangeaHydrangea arborescens, Wild or Smooth Hydrangea Shrub Height: 3–6 feet Spread: 3–5 feet Bloom Color: White Characteristics Fast-growing, mound-shaped, deciduous shrub Large, dark green leaves on unbranched canes Large, flat-topped clusters of small white flowers from May to June then sporadically to September Yellow fall foliage color Attributes Tolerates clay soil, wet soil, shallow-rocky soil, & black walnut; intolerant of drought (foliage withers) No serious pests or diseases (susceptible to aphids, mites, and scale and mold, rust, and powdery mildew); tolerates rabbits; deer may browse canes/leaves Flowers on new woodAttracts native bees, wasps, syrphid flies; larval host for hydrangea sphinx and leaf-tier moths Growing and Maintenance Tips Soil Requirements: Average, well-drained Light Requirements: Partial Shade, Shade Water Requirements: Moist To promote strong growth and maintain shape, prune canes near to ground late winter otherwise cut out old and damaged canes early spring Can grow 3–5 feet tall in a single season Use for erosion control, in rain garden, mixed shrub border, or woodland garden Hardiness: USDA Zones 3–9 Excellent Replacement for Buddleia davidii - Butterfly Bush Hydrangea macrophylla - Mophead Hydrangea Rhodotypos scandens - Jetbead

Learn more about other Mid-Atlantic plants: Tried and True Plant Fact Sheets