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My mother taught me never to boast. “No one wants to hear all of that,” she’d say. Well, Mom, look away, because I’m about to brag.

Everyone, look at my hydrangeas! Yes, they’re mine! If you know me, you know what a triumph this is. Finally, after years of heartache and struggle, I, Grant Dudley, have had hydrangea success!


The prettiest of all the blooms.


Yes, this is real. I didn’t doctor the photo.


New blooms are popping up daily!

I’ll tell you the truth, these plants are a sight for my sore eyes. I have been plagued with ugly, sickly and distressed hydrangeas for at least four years now.

“What made the difference this year?” you say. Well, I’m glad you asked.

Intervention. Yes, plain and simple intervention. This spring I stayed on top of the plants before they could take a nasty turn. I watered them faithfully (with a little vinegar here and there), pruned back the branches, pulled off questionable leaves and most importantly, treated the bushes with a fungicide (I now know a fungus has been the problem all along).

So, today, on this first day of summer, I proudly write here and say “Take that ugly hydrangeas!” There’s a new sheriff in town.

Have you ever turned a dud of a plant or flower into a blooming beauty? Let me know!

Oh, and I’m sorry Mom.



50 Responses

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  5. Heriberto says:

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  6. Marsha says:

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  7. Shelly says:

    This sounds crazy but my hydrangea is right outside our garage door. My husband would pour his left over beer around my plant and that year it was just covered with blooms, coffee grounds work well too, just put them on top of soil every so often around plant.

  8. carol alexander says:

    My hydrangea only gets leaves and no flowers for 2 years now. I keep it watered and in the sun part of the day. I feed it orchid food which I was told to do. And still no flowers. Help please.

  9. Casey says:

    I live in Florida and my hydrangeas wilted outside. I brought it inside and it has come back beautifully. Like you said it loves the morning sunshine ☀️

Grant DudleyGrant is the editor-in-chief of Design Happens and digital programming manager of HGTV.com. Despite growing up begging his mom not to ever drag him to another antique store, today his...


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