Hydrangeas: What’s The Difference

2020-06-17T10:57:13-05:00Gardening, Shrubs|
  • What's the Difference in Hydrangeas - hydrangeas

We see them.  We love them.  Hydrangeas.  Gorgeous blooms in varying hues of white, pink, and blue…and not to mention the big leaves in a deep shade of green.

But what’s the difference?  How do you know which one to choose?  There are several different types of Hydrangeas:

Big Leaf Hydrangea

  • Morning sun / afternoon shade or filtered sun
  • Most popular hydrangea type
  • The blooms can be blue or pink
  • Most bloom on old and new growth
  • Our favorites are Bloomstruck, Summer Crush and the Seaside Serenade series.

Panicle Hydrangea

  • Tolerates full sun to part shade
  • Our most adaptable type
  • Blooms are cone-shaped. Most are white and slowly start to turn reddish-pink over time as blooms ages. Coloration varies by type.
  • Some of our favorite varieties are limelight, quickfire, little lime, little quickfire, vanilla strawberry  and strawberry sundae.

Smooth Hydrangea 10414772

  • Morning sun / afternoon shade or filtered sun
  • Most popular is ‘Annabelle‘. It has beautiful green globes that slowly get larger and turn white.  The flowers will remain on the shrub for many weeks.

Oak Leaf Hydrangea

  • Morning sun / afternoon shade or filtered sun
  • Lesser known group, but hardy and functional
  • Get their name from the shape of the leaf
  • Foliage turns bright red in the fall
  • Blooms are white and cone-shaped


Whatever type of Hydrangea you choose, make sure to check the height and width and compare it to the space where it will eventually be planted. Check out more information on different types of hydrangeas in our Midwest Plant Library. (Tip: Either type ‘hydrangea’ in the search area or scroll to bottom of page.)

Hydrangeas beauty cannot be denied.  They make any landscape…or dining room table…stunning.