Container Gardening · Shrubs

Hydrangea ‘Bobo’ is quickly becoming a favorite!

Hydrangea 'Bobo' of Arborvitae - 2

I love hydrangeas. Their voluptuous blooms are magnificent in my summer landscape. Some are revealed while walking in the shade garden; others demand attention as they shamelessly flaunt their flowers in sunny borders.

Hydrangea 'Bobo' - flower close up

Hybridizers have been hard at work creating so many cultivars it’s hard to keep up, but I do my very best to try. Small but mighty, Hydrangea ‘Bobo’ is quickly making its way up my top ten list. Officially named Hydrangea paniculata ‘Ilvobo’, it is tagged ‘Bobo’ in garden centers.

Hydrangea 'Bobo' of Arborvitae

This delightful dwarf hydrangea is swathed in large, creamy white flower heads from mid-summer to fall. The flowers are presented on strong stems that have not flopped in my garden, even in heavy rains. In fall, blooms may blush pink. Soil pH has no effect on flower color.

Hydrangea 'Bobo' - flower just opening close up
The flowers of Hydrangea ‘Bobo’ begin opening early to mid summer.

Hydrangea ‘Bobo’ grows up to three feet tall and slightly wider. It prefers to grow in full sun or part shade in well drained, rich soil that has been heavily amended with organic matter. Water consistently the first year while its roots establish in the soil, then moderate moisture is all that’s required.

Fertilize Hydrangea ‘Bobo’ in early spring with a fertilizer labeled for trees and shrubs. Be sure to follow the directions on the label for rates of application.

Hydrangea 'Bobo' in Foundation Planting
Hydrangea ‘Bobo’ mixes beautifully with coral bells and and hostas in a partly shaded border.

A member of the panicle hydrangea family, it blooms on new wood so cold winters won’t freeze flower buds. If any pruning is necessary to shape Hydrangea ‘Bobo’, it should be done in late winter or early spring.

Hydrangea 'Bobo' - flower close up - 2

The size and flower power of Hydrangea ‘Bobo’ make it an ideal choice for foundation plantings, small hedges, and mixing with perennials in garden borders. It would also captivate in the role of thriller in summer container gardens.

If you have yet to try Hydrangea ‘Bobo’, get up right now, head to your local garden center, and buy one. Then garden with me!

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