This Hydrangea Has a Funny Name and Is a Southern Favorite

It's a popular planting in the gardens of the South.

Peegee Hydrangea
Photo: Robbie Gorr/Getty Images

Even if you don't recognize this shrub's singsong name, you've likely encountered this gorgeous hydrangea in a Southern garden or two. Peegee hydrangea is a popular selection of Hydrangea paniculata, which takes the form of a shrub or a small tree. It is one of the most popular and widely grown of the panicle hydrangeas, and it is also known as ‘Grandiflora.' Peegee hydrangea is often grown as an upright tree; it can be trained to heights of up to 25 feet tall, but it is most often found growing at heights of 10 to 15 feet tall and 8 feet wide. Because of its height and spread, it is sometimes used as a hedge planting.

The foliage of peegee hydrangea is attractive, with dark green, oval leaves, each of which ends in a point and turns bronze in the autumn months. Peegee hydrangea also produces showy white blooms throughout its flowering season, which is one of the big draws in planting this particular selection of hydrangea. Big clusters of white flowers bloom out in a stunning spray, and then they fade to pink, bronze, and brown as they age.

This hydrangea thrives in full sun or partial shade with moist, well-drained soil that's attended by regular watering. It's a hardy, fast-growing planting, and it's also eye-catching when it blooms. Hydrangea paniculata blooms on new growth, so it requires some pruning in late winter. This is a great hydrangea for beginners because it's so easy to grow and is a relatively forgiving shrub in terms of care and environment.

Peegee certainly brings the charm in the garden. Other popular selections to consider if you love peegee hydrangeas include: ‘Kyushu,' which produces white flowers; ‘Limelight,' which has bright green blooms; and ‘Interhydia' or Pink Diamond hydrangea, which has pink buds and big flowers that change from cream to red throughout the blooming season.

WATCH: Essential Southern Plant: Hydrangea

Do you have any peegee hydrangeas in your yard? Do you plan to plant any this year?

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