Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Doublicious’ is a gorgeous plant through and through. With hydrangeas, especially the macrophyllas, there are seemingly endless introductions of new cultivars. Many look the same to me. Doublicious hydrangeas are a different story altogether.
Doublicious hydrangea is brilliant, with fully double flowers of impeccable form.
It is fully double and normally marketed as pink. In the acidic soils of north Georgia, hydrangeas don’t stay pink for long without some help. I prefer the lavender-blue colors seen here.
Doublicious is a macrophylla hydrangea. Growth and cultivation are typical of the species. Macrophylla hydrangeas like morning sun, afternoon shade, and well-drained, rich soil. Mulching to 2″-3″ is recommended. It’s that simple with the macrophyllas but people insist on being rule breakers. Stretching the limits of mophead hydrangeas just isn’t wise.
It is hardy to zone 5, but I’m always leery of macrophyllas in colder climates. The shrub may survive winter, but the dormant buds may not. Doublicious is a relatively new hydrangea, introduced a little over a decade ago, so there is not a lot of data available.
I have read that Doublicious can flower on both old and new wood. Being a relatively new cultivar, Doublicious can be hard to find. In Georgia, we just don’t normally see winter temperatures cold enough to threaten the previous year’s buds. An exception is Hydrangea ‘Fuji Waterfall’, which reliable dies to the ground every year in my garden.
What I love about Hydrangea ‘Doublicious’ is the shape and size of mopheads. There is a nice balance to the size of the blooms. Nikko Blue may be a deservedly legendary hydrangea but the flowers are just so big. Annabelle is another example of a hydrangea bearing huge flowers that may be lesser for it when compared to the species.
You will see macrophylla hydrangeas marketed as being appropriate in full sun. Don’t believe it. In northern areas, you might pull it off, but growing macrophylla hydrangeas successfully in full sun requires a combination of expertise and growing conditions few gardeners can pull off. It will take lots of water and the soil must be perfect.
Give yourself and Doublicious hydrangea latitude by growing it with afternoon shade and in good quality soil.
I’ve seen Doublicious hydrangeas recommended for planting as hedges. I doubt it grows large enough. It only grows to maybe four feet or so. What worries me more is the idea of pruning into a formal hedge form. Don’t do it.
Hydrangeas can make brilliant hedges, but leave their natural form as is.
Macrophylla hydrangeas flowers contain aluminum compounds in the flowers. When there is acidic pH, the roots are able to more effectively deliver aluminum to the plant, resulting in lavender or blue flowers. Alkaline soils result in pink flowers.
You can change soil conditions to encourage the plant to produce pink or blue flowers. In a past article, I provided insight on how to change the color of Hydrangea macrophylla flowers.
|Genus/species||Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Doublicious’|
|Common name(s)||Doublicious hydrangea|
|Of note||Protect in zone 5 – flowers change color according to soil pH – gorgeous double flowers|
|Water requirements||average, high|
|Soil quality||rich, well-drained|
|Suggested use(s)||cottage gardens, mixed borders/perennial beds|
|Hardiness zone(s)||5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b|
|Deciduous or evergreen||deciduous|
|Flower color||lavender, pink, purple/violet|
|Exposure||afternoon shade, filtered light|1