The Revival Of Hydrangeas

Still life photography, vintage teacups and hydrangea flowers

Is it just me or has anyone else noticed that hydrangeas seem to have become a little trendy recently? Or perhaps they’ve always been that little bit edgy and its just me that thought they were a little old fashioned!

I have fond childhood memories of hydrangea bushes in the garden, of playing with small toys in the soil beneath the close packed woody stems of the bush. I used to love the way the old dead branches snapped off and were hollow inside and if you snapped off the ones that weren’t dead they had a sort of foamy, squishy middle. I’m guessing I probably shouldn’t have been doing that but isn’t that part of the beauty of hydrangeas, you can more or less treat them however you like and they really don’t seem to care!

Still life photography, vintage teacups and hydrangea flowers

Still life photography, vintage teacups and hydrangea flowers

Still life photography, vintage teacups and hydrangea flowers

I’ve inherited hydrangeas in the two gardens I’ve had of my own so they’ve almost always been around. And maybe that’s why, although I’ve always loved the flower heads, I’ve tended to think of them as a slightly boring plant that everyone seems to have.

But all of a sudden I’m seeing them everywhere, as beautiful arrangements in gorgeous homes and as additional styling in lots of photographs. And I kept coming across information on how to dry the flowers so I decided to give it a try.

Still life photography, vintage teacups and hydrangea flowers

They were maybe a week or two too late for cutting, the heads are a little weary looking in places but I don’t mind, I enjoy a little imperfection here and there. I read a couple of articles and decided I would dry mine out by standing them in a vase in a few inches of water and leaving it to evaporate. There are apparently different methods but putting them in water and leaving them for a few weeks appealed more than any method that needed a little more attention.

Still life photography, vintage teacups and hydrangea flowers

And here’s what none of those articles on drying hydrangeas bother to tell you….

When you cut them and bring them indoors to strip the leaves and put in a vase they will be full of tiny and not so tiny insects. There were things flying and running in all directions and I was stamping around the kitchen floor in the hope that none would make themselves at home.

They didn’t last more than a few minutes before I decided that the shed would be a more appropriate place for drying, a cool place is recommended so I’m crossing my fingers that it’s not too cold.

They’ve been out there for just over a week now and yesterday I decided to bring a head in and make use of it with some vintage bits and pieces I’ve been dying to photograph. The cold doesn’t seem to be doing any harm so far, the blooms are still looking lovely and there’s less evidence of creepy crawlies. The water isn’t showing any sign of going down though!

Still life photography, vintage teacups and hydrangea flowers

Still life photography, vintage teacups and hydrangea flowers

Still life photography, vintage teacups and hydrangea flowers

I’ll keep you updated on their progress but if everything goes to plan you will be seeing a lot more of them here on the blog in the future.

There’s going to be some exciting new courses coming in 2016, make sure you’ve either signed up for the free course, Beyond Snapshots, or the newsletter and you will be the first to know more!

 

 

2 Comments

  • Lisa Wright Reply

    My Grandma used to grow massive hydrangeas with real ease but they never grew very well in my parents’ garden – must have been to do with the soil. I have always loved them. Your photographs are beautifully dreamy.

    • Janet Broughton Reply

      I must live in an area that generally has good hydrangea soil then, I see them everywhere and mine seems to thrive no matter what I do to it!
      Thank you for your kind words x

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