What if I told you that you could enjoy your hydrangeas in your home for months to come? Well, you can! I’ll show you 3 easy ways to dry your hydrangea blooms for a great addition to your autumn decor.
Hydrangeas are beautiful flowers that make a stunning statement, whether they are in the garden or indoors.
But what I like best about hydrangeas is how their blooms take on an entirely different look towards the end of their growing season as they dramatically change colors.
And it gets better! You can enjoy these gorgeous blooms for months to come when your dry them.
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I personally love hydrangeas more towards the end of the season, when they take on more of a vintage vibe to them. There are so many varieties available and their old-fashioned appearance fits right in with any cottage-style decor.
Timing is Everything
When starting the process of drying your hydrangeas, timing is everything.
If you cut them too soon, they will still be holding too much water and will shrivel up. If the blooms are white, or a bright, vibrant color, they are most likely too soon to cut and dry.
The end of the hydrangea season can range from August to October, depending on your location and the variety of the flower. Here in the Pacific Northwest, I usually harvest hydrangeas in late August and early September.
If you’re cutting hydrangeas with moisture on them it will cause them to wilt and die before they dry. Don’t cut hydrangeas if there is morning dew on them, or if it has rained on them.
The 3 Ways to Dry Hydrangeas
1. Drying Hydrangeas on the Bush
This method allows the hydrangea blooms to continue to grow more intense in color, and become more papery to the touch.
Keep in mind that if left on the bush too long before harvesting, the blooms will eventually turn brown.
When the heads on the flower start to take on a vintage look and have a papery feel to them, they are ready to be cut and brought inside. Be sure to strip off the leaves of the cut stems. This is because the leaves are huge water drinkers, and will steal hydration from the bloom.
2. Drying Hydrangeas in a Vase or Container of Water
This method is a combination of drying naturally on the bush, and then indoors, in a vase with water.
I had a hard time getting my head around this. But I learned that by putting the hydrangeas in water, their color is better preserved.
Add the hydrangeas to a vase or container with 2-3 inches of water.
Make sure that all the stems are completely submerged, and that they are not overcrowding one another. Good circulation is key for the flowers to dry properly.
The goal is to let the water evaporate naturally. If it becomes stagnant, replace it with the same amount of water that was existing in the vase.
As the hydrangeas are drying, keep them out of direct sunlight to help decrease the fading. The process is complete when the heads are dry and stiff.
You can now use them in your decor without water.
When using this method to dry hydrangeas, the colors tend to be more vibrant and the flower is less fragile than drying without water.
3. Drying Hydrangeas Indoors Without Water
Cut the hydrangeas and bring them indoors to let dry.
I tried this last year by tying and hanging them upside down in a cold, dry room. No water is needed if they are almost completely dried out on a bush, but haven’t turned brown yet.
Tip: Experts say that using silica gel is a great way to dry fresh blooms or flowers that have just opened and have not had time to naturally dry on the plant. I haven’t tried this method yet, but hope to this year.
My personal favorite method of drying hydrangeas is option 2.
I’d love to hear what your favorite hydrangea variety is and if you have a personal preference when it comes to drying hydrangeas. Be sure to leave a comment below.
Until next time,
Happy Hydrangea Drying!