How To Develop A Pinky Winky Hydrangea For The Final Dreamy Blooms
Quick Pinky Winky Facts

Botanical name:

Hydrangea paniculata

Height: 6-8 ft (1.8-2.4m)

Spread: 5-6 ft (1.5 -1.8m)

Sun exposure:

Full sun, part shade

Soil: Well-draining, neutral; pH 5-8

Hardiness zones:

USDA Zones 3-8

When to plant:

Early spring

The Pinky Winky hydrangea is a large paniculata cultivar that produces massive panicle flower heads atop long, robust stems. Over time, its pristine white flowers fade to attractive shades of pastel and deep pink. A popular choice among home gardeners, Pinky Winky is at home in both formal and informal growing spaces.

Admittedly, a Pinky Winky hydrangea tree requires a little more specialized seasonal care. However, most gardeners who enjoy growing hydrangeas consider their beauty to be well worth the effort. Once established, these paniculata hydrangeas will grow quickly. Where conditions are ideal, gardeners can expect the plants to grow approximately three feet (1m) per season.

(Image credit: Bankiras / Shutterstock)

Benefits of Growing Pinky Winky Hydrangea

Because of their immense beauty, pink hydrangea varieties like Pinky Winky are commonly used in bouquets and flower arrangements, making them an excellent addition to home cutting gardens. They are also a wonderful addition to pollinator gardens, their blossoms noted for attracting bees, butterflies and other pollinators.

Where to Grow Pinky Winky Hydrangeas

As quick growers, they can be grouped together to create a privacy screen, or grown in borders, planters or containers. Full-grown Pinky Winky hydrangea plants are known to reach impressive sizes, and often serve as an invaluable focal plant within the landscape. While these large flowering shrubs are ideal for use in hedges and borders, the plants may also be pruned to a tree-like form.

pinky winky hydrangea shrub growing in partial shade in mixed border

(Image credit: John Richmond / Alamy)

Best Pinky Winky Hydrangea Care

Though most would consider the Pinky Winky hydrangea to be an easy-to-grow hydrangea variety, the needs of the plant must be met in order for it to thrive. Here are some of the essential care tips to bear in mind:

  • Lighting Conditions: Hydrangea plants grow best in flower beds that drain well and receive several hours of sun each day. In warmer regions, they may benefit from afternoon shade, which helps prevent wilting through the hottest parts of the day.
  • Best Watering: New hydrangea plantings should be watered regularly throughout the period they’re getting established. During this time, supplemental water may be required two-three times a week. Once established, the frequency of hydrangea irrigation can often be reduced, but it may still vary depending upon the weather. Pinky Winky hydrangea plants grown in warmer regions may require drip irrigation or soaker hoses to prevent wilting and to keep the plants looking their best.
  • Soil & Compost: Make sure the soil is fertile and well draining. A little compost can work wonders if your soil is clay-based. This hydrangea will grow well in alkaline and acid-based settings, as long as they aren’t too extreme. Add a little sprinkling of fish blood and bone at the time of planting, and again every spring.

pinky winky hydrangea shrub with fading flower heads

(Image credit: Botany Vision / Alamy)

Problems, Pests, & Diseases

Though Pinky Winky panicle hydrangea plants are generally free of disease, there are some common plant issues that may require your attention. Foliar hydrangea diseases are of specific interest. Blight, leaf spot and mildew are those most frequently observed. Symptoms may include yellowing leaves, the development of tan-brown lesions, and premature leaf drop. Though complete loss of plants is not common, these diseases can negatively impact the plant’s overall appearance.

Paniculata hydrangeas seldom have serious problems with pests. However, occasional treatment for aphids may be needed.

Pruning Pinky Winky Hydrangeas

Seasonal pruning is important to maintaining hydrangeas. Like many panicle types, Hydrangea paniculata Pinky Winky plants will bloom on new growth. For this reason, most gardeners prefer to prune hydrangeas in late winter or early spring. Pruning at this time will help to promote new growth in preparation for the growing season.

Trimming the plants before active growth is also an opportunity to prune the shrubs to the size and shape you desire, as well as removing dead or damaged stems.

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