Meet the 'Little Honey' Hydrangea—It's Perfect for Small Yards

Its golden foliage turns crimson in autumn.

If you're looking for a compact blooming shrub that packs a punch, check out our latest favorite, 'Little Honey' hydrangea. Hydrangea quercifolia 'Little Honey' produces bright honey-hued foliage and pretty white flowers that appear in summertime.

Hydrangea quercifolia
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According to the NC State Extension Service, "Little Honey Hydrangea is a dwarf cultivar with bright golden-yellow foliage in spring that matures to chartreuse in summer and is its best asset." While we see lots of deep greens in the garden, this hydrangea brings a golden hue to the landscape. The leaves are shaped like those of oaks, and the flowers are white with hints of pink as they age. They appear in clusters in June and July. In the autumn months, this hydrangea's foliage turns to a showy deep red color.

This is a low-maintenance shrub that, if planted in the right conditions, can pretty much take care of itself. The NC State Extension Service says, "This shrub grows to 3-4 feet tall and wide making it ideal for smaller yards and spaces. It blooms on old wood, so any pruning needed should be done right after flowering."

For best results, grow 'Little Honey' hydrangea in a spot with full sun or part shade. It also likes moist, well-draining soil incorporated with plenty of organic matter. As it matures, the bark of this shrub begins to peel, much like other oakleaf hydrangeas.

According to the Missouri Botanical Garden, this hydrangea "thrives in moist soils and appreciates a summer mulch which helps retain soil moisture." They also note that it is "effective as a specimen or accent for foundations or other locations near homes or patios," and can be used in shrub borders, as hedge plantings, and in large containers.

For more information on hydrangeas, and to get started growing your own, check out The Grumpy Gardener's Guide to Hydrangeas.

What's your go-to type of hydrangea? Do you have any blooming in your garden this year?

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