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Hydrangea quercifolia

Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
hy-DRAN-jee-ah kwer-sih-FOH-lee-ah
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Hydrangea quercifolia, commonly called oak leaf hydrangea, is an upright, broad-rounded, suckering, multi-stemmed, deciduous shrub that typically grows 4-6' (less frequently to 8') tall. It is native to bluffs, moist woods, ravines, and stream banks from Georgia to Florida to Louisiana. 

Specific epithet is in reference to the leaves that look like those of Quercus (oak).

The Oakleaf hydrangea is easily grown in organically rich, medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. It thrives in moist soils and appreciates a summer mulch which helps retain soil moisture. Bloom occurs on old wood. Prune if needed immediately after flowering (little pruning is usually needed). Winter damaged stems may be pruned in early spring. Plants should be given a sheltered location and winter protection (e.g., mulch, burlap wrap) in USDA Zone 5, particularly when not fully established. Plants can lose significant numbers of flower buds or die to the ground in harsh winters (temperatures below -10 degrees F), thus respectively impairing or totally destroying the bloom for the coming year.

Insects, Diseases, or Other Plant Problems: This plant has some susceptibility to leaf blight and powdery mildew. Aphids and spider mites are occasional visitors.

TOXIC ONLY IF LARGE QUANTITIES EATEN.

More information on Hydrangea.

Cultivars:
  • 'Alice'
  • 'Harmony'
  • 'Little Honey'
    golden foliage
  • 'Munchkin'
    semi-dwarf
  • 'Pee Wee'
  • 'Ruby Slippers'
    semi-dwarf
  • 'Snowflake'
  • 'Snow Queen'
  • 'Sykes Dwarf'
Tags:
#fragrant#butterflies#deciduous#pollinators#songbirds#drought tolerant#specimen#wildlife plant#showy#nectar plant#cut flowers#low maintenance#winter interest#hedge#accent plant#playground#dried flowers#good fall#cpp#children's garden
Cultivars:
  • 'Alice'
  • 'Harmony'
  • 'Little Honey'
    golden foliage
  • 'Munchkin'
    semi-dwarf
  • 'Pee Wee'
  • 'Ruby Slippers'
    semi-dwarf
  • 'Snowflake'
  • 'Snow Queen'
  • 'Sykes Dwarf'
Tags:
#fragrant#butterflies#deciduous#pollinators#songbirds#drought tolerant#specimen#wildlife plant#showy#nectar plant#cut flowers#low maintenance#winter interest#hedge#accent plant#playground#dried flowers#good fall#cpp#children's garden
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Hydrangea
    Species:
    quercifolia
    Family:
    Hydrangeaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    GA, FL, LA
    Wildlife Value:
    Its flowers are attractive to butterflies and other insects. Songbirds eat the seeds. The Oakleaf hydrangea is moderately resistant to damage from deer.
    Play Value:
    Wildlife Enhancement
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Poisonous
    Shrub
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Cream/Tan
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Panicle
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Good Cut
    Good Dried
    Long-lasting
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Description:
    The Oakleaf hydrangea is noted for producing pyramidal 4-12" erect panicles of creamy white flowers in summer on exfoliating branches. The fragrant flowers fade to pink, then tan.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Leathery
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Orange
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    The Oakleaf hydrangea is clad with dark green, large, opposite, simple, bold, leathery 3-7 lobed, oak-like leaves. The leaves are fuzzy when young and grow to 3-8 inches long. Fall colors are wine, orange, mahogany.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Recreational Play Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Children's Garden
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Hedge
    Specimen
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
  • Poison:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    Nausea, stomach pain, vomiting, sweating.
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Hydrangin, a cyanogenic glycoside.
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Bark
    Flowers
    Leaves