Where Should I Cut Hydrangea Blooms off of the Plant?

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen

Hydrangea blooms can make for fabulous floral arrangements, especially the mophead varieties, which are so large, they can fill a vase with its many tiny flowers. They also keep very well, especially with a few precautions. Since new flowers frequently bud on old wood, cut the green part, not the brown area of the stem. This will ensure that new blooms will delight you the next year. You may expect properly cut blooms to last for at least several weeks to a month.

A blue hydrangea blossom.
A blue hydrangea blossom.

Floristry experts suggest that you make certain the flower is at least a week old and is fully colored prior to cutting it since the older the bloom, the longer the cut flower will last in water. Once the bloom is cut, which should be cut on a diagonal, the hydrangea should be immersed in water for two hours. To increase water absorption, you can either smash the bottom of the stem with a hammer, or cut 1 inch (2.54 cm) off the bottom of the stem while it is immersed in water. This will keep the bloom alive and drinking water for a longer period of time.

Hydrangea blooms must be kept well hydrated after they are cut.
Hydrangea blooms must be kept well hydrated after they are cut.

Some experts recommend boiling the water and then chilling it before soaking of the bloom. Others simply recommend keeping the stem well immersed in water. Consider using a shorter vase, and cutting the hydrangea stem short, about 6 inches (15.24 cm) or less. A longer stem requires more water and will shorten the life of the bloom. Since the stem will take up water, check longer stems frequently to see if the water in the vase needs to be replaced.

Though hydrangea leaves are pretty, they should all be trimmed off a bloom. They will also steal water from the flower part and shorten the life of a cut flower. Also, do not trim non-blooming stalks on a plant less than five years old because they tend to become next year’s flowers. Cutting with caution is, therefore, recommended.

Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen

Tricia has a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and has been a frequent wiseGEEK contributor for many years. She is especially passionate about reading and writing, although her other interests include medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion. Tricia lives in Northern California and is currently working on her first novel.

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Discussion Comments

anon174205

my blooms on my hydrangeas are getting ugly colored and i want to cut the blooms so more will come. where do i cut the the stem so i will have more blooms.

anon173506

When you say immerse the hydrangea do you mean the flower and stem?

anon167172

Is is okay to cut hydrangea blooms now (April). If so, do I cut a long stem or short?

anon102096

above the first pair of large leaves.

anon100160

If you're cutting hydrangea blooms in June or July, you can cut the blooms with long stems, because the shrub won't yet be setting buds for the coming year. If you're cutting hydrangea blooms in August, leave short stems, cutting above the first pair of large leaves, so you don't accidentally remove next year's buds

anon91240

do you cut off the old blooms to have them bloom again?

anon83759

exactly where on the stalk should you cut for reblooming.

anon41883

That doesn't answer the question! Apart from saying to cut on the diagonal.

Where along the stalk do you make the cut?

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