Annabelle hydrangea covered in white flowers Annabelle hydrangea surrounded by boxwood which is holding up the floppy stems
photo of Joe McDaniel

Meet the Breeder

Joe McDaniel
Urbana, IL, USA

‘Annabelle’

Hydrangea - Smooth

Hydrangea arborescens

'Annabelle'

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Annabelle hydrangea covered in white flowers Annabelle hydrangea surrounded by boxwood which is holding up the floppy stems
  • Native to North America
  • Good for cut flowers
  • Reliable
Description

The original and classic: 'Annabelle' has big and bold snow ball flowers that gradually change from green to pure white. Typically flops over under the weight of its flowers, especially after summer storms. Introduced by Joe McDaniel in 1962. Adaptable to light shade.

USDA Zone 3 - 8 (-40°F/-40°C)

icon visually displaying the size and shape of this plant variety

Exposure Full sun, Part sun

Height 3 - 4'

Width 4 - 5'

Finish Time 1 season

Type Deciduous

Bloom Time Summer

Flower Color White

Foliage Color Green

Liner Sizes 2 1/4", 4"

Soil Grows well in most soils; avoid wet and poorly drained sites. Mulch is recommended in the landscape.

Pruning Blooms on new wood - cut back by about one-third its total height in early spring, just as the new growth begins to emerge on the stems. Smooth hydrangeas may be cut back harder, however, this prevents woody cells from developing, prohibiting the plant from achieving its maximum stem strength.

Uses Versatile and showy, smooth hydrangeas offer dozens of landscape applications: foundation plantings, perennial gardens, hedges, cut flower gardens, naturalizing, pollinator and wildlife gardens.

Growing Tips We recommend full sun for smooth hydrangeas in the cooler end of its hardiness range; afternoon shade is a good idea in warmer climates, however. The flower color of smooth hydrangeas is not influenced by soil chemistry. Makes an excellent cut flower, both cut and dried.