Friday, November 14, 2014

Drying my hydrangeas the natural way. . . . .

My hydrangeas, though late blooming this year, are now ready for drying.
I was crying over them this summer when there was nary a flower.  
But then they surprised me with some late, good sized heads, and 
I've been waiting to cut them for the process which will give me some 
lovely muted color for inside the house during the winter months.

Yesterday there were still a few sleepy bees around. . . . but they didn't seem concerned when I starting cutting other blooms around them.
Drying naturally is so easy, no tricks required other than cutting at the right time. 
My hydrangeas are all blue - I think they are the best color for preserving as they 
change to many different shades, each one so beautiful.

Once the soft-to-touch, hydrated and flexible flowers begin to change both in color 
and texture on the plant, it's time to harvest. Here in the southeast this has been the 
perfect week prior to below freezing temperatures due tonight.
If you live in more northern climes you may have already cut your 
beautiful hydrangeas and have them dried and part of your decor by now.

What you will require:
Ready-to-harvest blooms
Garden Shears/Pruners
Fresh water
A tall heavy glass vase

Best time to cut flowers is late morning after any dew has evaporated.
Choose full well-shaped blooms.
Cut stems at an angle, 12-18 inches in length, and carefully remove all leaves.
Place in a clear container, heavy glass is best, filled halfway with fresh water.
All stems should be submerged several inches, and try not to have too many
heads crushed tightly together.  This bunch, harvested earlier in the week, seemed 
to gulp up the water almost immediately so I did replenish it.

Place your flowers in a cool dry area out of direct sun, but in a 
spot where you can enjoy them as they dry out.
The process should take a couple of weeks. Once the water 
has completely gone, your flowers should be ready to use for
winter, Christmas and decorative projects such as wreaths and table 
centerpieces - or just massed in a lovely container such as a basket.  
Some people spray them with hairspray when dry - I've never done that.  
The best way is to dry new ones each year so they don't have a chance to 
get dusty, faded, and start disintegrating all over your furniture.
Hope you have some lovely hydrangeas to dry and enjoy over the winter months.


  1. the bee is lovely as the blossom ...

  2. Dear Mary, I have always loved Hydrangeas but only the white variety grows in our climate. Your hydrangeas are beautiful and your photographs are stunning.
    Each photograph is post card worthy.

  3. Sadly my hydrangeas did not bloom at all this year, but I have some left over from last year and they are still fine. I did not spray them, and for some lucky reason they are not dusty!

  4. A wonderful tutorial on drying hydrangeas. I have used the same method with great success.
    We are so fortunate to have them grow so well here in NC. I never had much luck with them when I lived in MI.
    All of your photos are gorgeous, but the second from the last is jaw dropping. Wow!! So, so beautiful the varying shades of the hydrangeas next to that white pumpkin. I am now kicking myself for not drying more this season. I only did one small bunch of the limelight variety. Perhaps I'll take another look at my plants and see if I can come up with a few more.
    The wind is whipping out there this morning and with it comes the start of our arctic blast.
    Keep cozy!

  5. Oh those are so beautiful - I used to have the bluest hydrangeas - in California. I miss the lovely bush and the dried flowers.

  6. They are gorgeous, Mary. Why not come over and share them with us for Pink Saturday? It would be nice to have a visit from you sometime.♥ It has been years.

  7. I do love the muted soft colours of later Hydrangeas. I haven't dried any this year, and they are still looking lovely in the garden.

  8. Mary, these are lovely. My experience is that the dried hydrangea blooms will last many years. I just threw out all the blooms that I had dried from a party for my mother many years ago. They were beginning to fall apart and needless to say were dusty. '-)
    You group is gorgeous. Wish we could grow hydrangea like these here.

  9. Every year I love seeing what you do with your hydrangeas Mary!
    I'm admiring the variation in colour.
    I have many white hydrangeas, from the old fashioned one with huge blowsy flowers to the delicate oak leafed.
    I would love to have your blue hydrangea in my garden - I'm crossing my fingers that you know the name!
    Loved your tutorial thank you - it's exactly what I do too.
    Such artistic photography!
    Here on the other side of the world, November is the month I look forward to in my garden with the roses coming into flower, sadly however, this year they are being battered by the stormy windy weather we are experiencing. Spring can be such an unsettled month.
    You are in my thoughts dear Mary.
    Shane x

  10. Oh, the photos and the blooms are spectacular. How I wish I had room for hydrangeas here!

  11. Oh gorgeous hydrangeas! You do have a knack for drying and displaying so beautifully.


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