How to Care for Annabelle Hydrangeas and Avoid the Drooping Effect

The Annabelle Hydrangea plant is one of the most extraordinary blossoming flowers I have ever had the pleasure to own.

Ten inches of snowflake blossoms make this plant a must have in a garden. We planted our two shrubs a couple years ago and I am still learning how to care for them. This year I learned a valuable lesson.

How to Care for Annabelle Hydrangeas

These magnificent flowers produce gorgeous scented blooms from June to early Fall. The flowers grow on large stalks that can get six feet high. They thrive in slightly cooler temperatures therefore very hot afternoon sun should be avoided if possible.

Annabelle Hydrangeas-1This is one Annabelle plant we have in our front yard. It continues to get bigger each year producing multiple blooms.

Annabelle Hydrangeas-2The perfect white coloring of the plant makes it a very popular landscape design choice for many gardeners.

Pruning Tips for an Annabelle Hydrangea and Avoid a Big Mistake I Made

Annabelle Hydrangeas-3Pruning of an Annabelle Hydrangea plant should be done in the Fall. I made a big mistake this past year and pruned the plant back too much, almost to the roots. While the plant came back beautifully and produced big beautiful blooms, the stems were weak and many of the heads fell over onto the ground.

Annabelle Hydrangeas-4These pictures were taken when they first started blooming. I am in love with their magnificent round full blooms.

Annabelle Hydrangeas-5The mixture of green and white against the white backdrop is really pretty.

Annabelle Hydrangeas-6Each snowflake petal is perfectly formed and so stunning.

Annabelle HydrangeasThey grow so tall they can been seen from the street. Our house sits high on a hill, so the view of blooming flowers is a pretty sight from the street.

Annabelle Hydrangeas-8But then…this happened after a heavy rain. Many of the beautiful blooms bent over and were touching the ground. What was once a full and tall shrub has now flattened. It was actually much worse, but I cut off several stems to bring indoors.

Theses hydrangeas make beautiful indoor flowers as well. I used them in my reveal of our Foyer Renovation.

Tips to Keep Annabelle Hydrangeas from Drooping Over

Sharing a few tips, I have picked up, that will help to ensure this variety of Hydrangea has the best chance for survival and looks its very best as well.

  •  Planting Annabelles next to a fence will help stake the heavy blooms of the Hydrangea.
  •  Planting at least three Annabelle shrubs, three to four feet apart, will help support one another.
  •  Prune plants sparingly. This is very important. If the hydrangeas tend to flatten in the rain, prune Annabelles to 18″-24″ tall rather than cutting it to the ground every year. This will allow the stems to thicken a little each year, becoming stouter and better able to support the other branches and blooms. The heads will also be more plentiful but slightly smaller and the smaller heads will be less likely to droop.
  • Place a short wire fence or wire support around each plant before they bloom. If young Annabelle plants are surrounded by wire fencing before they put out new branches in the spring, the blooms will be held up off the ground.

These plants are amazing, they deserve the best care and support so they can be enjoyed for years to come. Do you have any tips for Annabelles? Please share in the comments below.

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4 thoughts on “How to Care for Annabelle Hydrangeas and Avoid the Drooping Effect

  1. Excellent advice Denise! I have that drooping problem with some of my hydrangeas, and though they’re not Annabelles, I’m excited to try your tips! I’d love to GET some Annabelles though! I’ll keep my eyes out! 🙂 Thanks so much for the great ideas!

    1. Hi Barbara, I think this will truly help. I don’t prune my regular hydrangeas back at all and they never droop, so there is something real to not pruning. I do believe it strengthens the stalks considerably.

  2. Hi your Annabelle’s look fantastic. I have had a strange experience this year, I have two Annabelle’s planted next to each other, about 2feet apart, last year they flowered beautifully, I cut them down to about 12 inches once the danger of frost had gone this spring. One has grown tall and is covered in flower heads and the other has grown leaves but no flowers and is only about 15 inches tall. They get the same amount of sun. It’s very strange.

    1. Hi Elizabeth, I have a very similar experience with my 2 Annabelles. One is huge and one small. Mine were transplanted from the front yard to the back so not sure if one didn’t transplant as well? It’s also possible that a fungus hit one of the plants? I much prefer my Limelight hydrangeas – so very easy to care for with very few issues.

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