Teller Blue HydrangeaHydrangea macrophylla 'Blaumeise'
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Hydrangea macrophylla 'Blaumeise'
Outdoor Growing zone
The Teller Blue Hydrangea is the crème-de-la-crème of garden hydrangeas, growing into a bush 5 feet or more in height, with very large and striking foliage. Even out of bloom it is beautiful. In mid-summer the flower heads develop, staying attractive into early fall. They are the lacecap type, with a flat form about 5 inches across, packed with tiny flowers surrounded by up to 15 very large florets. This flower form is weather-proof, and bushes don’t collapse, as many mophead plants do. The flowers are always attractive, being a rich indigo blue when grown in acid soil.
Partial shade is best for the Teller Blue Hydrangea, which should be protected from the head of summer sun, but not grown in a darkly-shaded area. The soil should be rich, moist, and well-drained, and this plant is not drought resistant. Acid soils are needed to produce blue flowers, and in alkaline soils they will be pink. Usually pest-free, this plant grows best with plenty of compost and water. It needs almost no pruning, and too much trimming will reduce the flowering.
There is no doubt that hydrangeas are the premier flowering shrub for summer. These days there is an enormous range of varieties, in many colors and flower forms, to choose from. Sometimes, though, if you need a substantial landscape shrub with some of the most spectacular and striking flowers, then it is best to simply go for the best. For a blue hydrangea there is no doubt that will be the Teller Blue Hydrangea. Growing into a substantial bush, and smothered for many weeks in spectacular blue flowers, this variety has the advantage of blooms of the lacecap type, rather than mopheaded. Mopheads may be big and grand, but in the garden they often fall over without careful staking. Lacecaps like the Teller Blue Hydrangea have slightly smaller flower heads, but they stay upright through rain and wind, and this variety has very large individual florets, making a wonderful show. For a top pick in the garden, if you love blue, it can’t be beaten.
The Teller Blue Hydrangea is a medium-sized deciduous shrub, usually growing to about 5 feet tall, but capable, in good conditions, of reaching as much as 7 feet in height and 5 feet in width. The leaves are very attractive, with a bold look, and they are large, between 4 and 7 inches in length, and up to 5 inches wide. They have a dense, crinkled texture with a pointed tip and a strongly serrated edge, and they are a rich, dark green, turning yellow, sometimes with red tones, in fall. The first indication of blooms will be seen by late spring, developing at the ends of each stem.
By mid-summer these buds develop into large, flat flower heads, 5 or even 6 inches across, with two distinct types of flowers. There are up to 15 large, flat florets, with 4 overlapping petals, about 1½ inches across. Between them and especially in the center of the flower head, are many small flowers, creating the charming lace cap look that makes these blooms so distinctive and beautiful. The color of the flowers varies with your soil. In strongly acidic conditions the flowers will be vibrant indigo blue. In less acidic soils they will be blue with purple tones, becoming more purple in neutral soils. In alkaline soils the flowers will be purple-pink to pink. No matter the color the blooms are always striking, showy, attractive and distinctive. Blooms last for weeks and weeks, gradually turning greenish, but still attractive, by early fall.
This bold and beautiful shrub is perfect for borders and beds around your home, out in the garden, or in woodland and more natural parts of your property. Grow it behind azaleas and spring flowering plants, or surrounding large trees. Use it around your home as part of the foundation planting. It can also be grown in large tubs to place on a terrace or patio.
This hydrangea is best suited for warmer zones, from zone 6 through zone 9.
The ideal light conditions for the Teller Blue Hydrangea are light shade, perhaps with some morning sun, or on the north side of a wall. The planting area should be bright but with protection from the heat of the sun. Too dark a spot will reduce the flowering. The soil should be rich, evenly moist but well-drained, and of any pH value. This plant is not drought resistant, and grows best with a steady supply of moisture.
The Teller Blue Hydrangea is vigorous and generally pest free, but not resistant to deer. Use plenty of rich compost when preparing your planting spot, and mulch annually, in spring. Water regularly and deeply through the summer months. In acid soils you can intensify the blue coloring with special fertilizers for blue hydrangeas, and in alkaline soils the addition of lime to the soil will give the clearest pinks. It may take a couple of seasons for color changes to happen. This shrub needs little pruning, and too much will reduce blooming in the following year. Remove any weak and damaged stems in spring, and otherwise allow it to grow naturally. Be careful not to remove the tip of older stems, as this is where the blooms will grow.
It is over 150 years since the first mophead hydrangeas – Hydrangea macrophylla – arrived in Europe from Japan. Since then they have been incredibly popular garden plants around the world, and many varieties have been created. Most are of the ‘hortensia’ type, with dense flower heads of large florets. Wild plants are of the ‘lacecap’ type, with many small flowers, and just a few large florets.
We might not think of Switzerland as a country for hydrangeas, but the climate is ideal, and there is a strong tradition of scientific breeding of plants and the development of growing techniques. The Federal Research Institute for Horticulture, in the castle of Wädenswil, was founded in 1890 and first bred grape varieties for wine. In 1952 it began a program of breeding lacecap hydrangeas, crossing a mophead variety called ‘Tödi’ with a wild lacecap plant. The program ended in 1987, after developing 26 new varieties. These plants have become known as the ‘Teller Series’ (‘teller’ means ‘a plate’ in German), in reference to the flat form of the bloom. One of the very best, and most enduring, is ‘Blaumeise’, which was released to growers in 1979. Today it is usually known as the Teller Blue Hydrangea.
We love being able to offer the best, and there is no doubt that for garden use in warmer zones the Teller Blue Hydrangea is an outstanding summer-flowering shrub. Whatever your soil it will be stunningly attractive, and not collapse in the rain as so many mophead hydrangeas do. These classic varieties were bred to be good, but order now as the demand is always high and they soon ship out to happy gardeners across the country.