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Hydrangea macrophylla Geoffrey Chadbund

Hydrangea macrophylla Geoffrey Chadbund is described as having florets that vary in color from violet and fuchsia across the spectrum to rose red.

This diversity in reported flower colors was a relief, as the photographs I took years ago in the Atlanta Botanical Garden revealed flowers that were lavender. Comparisons online revealed lots of rose-colored and pink versions of Geoffrey Chadbund. I have long experience with mophead hydrangeas and their changeable nature according to pH. I just didn’t immediately draw the parallel with Geoffrey Chadbund, a lacecap hydrangea.

Hydrangeas have variable flower colors according to the pH of the soil (acidic=blue, alkaline=pink). Geoffrey Chadbund follows this trend, and the flower color will be heavily influenced by soil pH.

hydrangea geoffrey chadbund
Late summer blooms of hydrangea Geoffrey Chadbund

Notes about the cultivation of Hydrangea macrophylla Geoffrey Chadbund:
Geoffrey Chadbund is a lacecap hydrangea and many of the lacecaps are fairly tender when it comes to winter hardiness. Geoffrey Chadbund, in particular, lacks cold hardiness, limited to zone 6 and warmer.

Growth is to 5′ tall and wide and blooms are fairly large, capable of being 8″ across.

Notes about Hydrangea macrophylla:
Hydrangea macrophylla are deciduous shrubs native to Japan and China. Macrophylla means large-leaved.  Common names for Hydrangea macrophylla include mophead and penny mac.

Avoid planting macrophylla hydrangeas in the afternoon sun…there will be plenty of drooping and pouting leaves, lending a thirsty and overall depressed feel to the landscape. Morning sun and afternoon shade are perfect.

I think the most beautiful hydrangeas I have seen were planted in very heavy shade; the result of the shade was a very airy and open feel to the plant. The flower production was lessened but still provided an impressive display in the landscape.

If I had to choose between a site that was a little too shady versus one that was a little too sunny, with the macrophylla hydrangeas I would always choose the shady option.

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