Pinky Winky™ Hydrangea

Last year, I received four small Pinky Winky™ field trial plants about 8-inches tall; two in the spring and two in the fall. I planted the spring arrivals in part sun and their fall counterparts in shade (I may have to move these, but want to see how they do). All are doing quite well, with the spring babies having grown to about four feet and full of flowers. Those planted in the fall are about half that size; no flowers yet.

So far, these have been carefree, easy to grow, and quick to flower. I gave them the same dose of organic fertilizer all of my other shrubs get. No bugs, no diseases.

If you like paniculata-style hydrangeas, Pinky Winky™ will make a nice addition to your garden. The red stems contrast nicely with the leaves and are strong enough to hold the flowers upright. It takes a little while for the 12 –16-inch white blooms to fully emerge (upper photo), so if you’re like me, you may spend a lot of time hovering over them, watching to see what they’re doing.

Once some buds have flowered out though, you’ll spend your hover time watching for Pinky Winky’s™ unique color flush, which begins at the base of the bloom and slowly works its way up. Starting as an almost imperceptible pastel pink, the long-lasting panicles deepen to dark pink over time. As new flowers keep coming, the plant will show both white and pink blooms simultaneously (lower photo).

It seems to me that this would also be a fun plant for kids, since it grows fast, does interesting things over a long period of time, and is loaded with flowers.

This was a new introduction for 2008, but last week I saw some mature shrubs in a local garden center for just $20, so they’re very affordable.

For more information, go to the Proven Winners™ website,

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