Plant name:Hydrangea macrophylla 'Blushing Bride'
Bloom color: Six-inch, semidouble, pure white, aging to light pink
Foliage: Glossy, leathery, dark green
Season: Midsummer through early fall
Suggested by: Peggy Anne Montgomery of Bailey Nurseries
Hardiness: Zones 5 to 8
Tips: Ever-popular hydrangeas offer countless choices in flower color and form. Yet most species require similar care. They do best in moist but well-drained soil rich in organic matter. They need moderate to ample water, or about an inch a week. Bigleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla), the thirstiest species, might need two inches weekly to keep it from wilting in summer heat. Most species prefer a spot in full sun to part shade (especially in hot areas), but smooth hydrangea (H. arborescens), a native of eastern woodlands, requires shade. Hydrangeas do fine with one dose of balanced fertilizer in early spring and another dose just after flowering. Timing pruning might be the biggest hurdle for hydrangea growers