Dry Hydrangea Flowers To Retain Color

The Simple Way to Dry Hydrangea Flowers and Retain Their Color

Hydrangeas are a beautiful shrub with an old-fashioned appeal, yet they fit into the modern garden seamlessly. With so many varieties, colors, and even bloom shapes, you’d easily be able to find a hydrangea that suits your garden (as long as you are lucky enough to have the right climate, of course!). Possibly the best thing about hydrangeas is drying the blooms. This is the simple method that I use to dry hydrangea flowers and retain their hue.How to dry hydrangea flowers and retain their color

Of course, you won’t retain the same vivid color that you have on the plant while it’s growing in the garden. The color that you can achieve on a dried hydrangea is more of a muted set of greens, grays, blues, pinks, and purples which looks beautiful when displayed together

The other thing to note is that the climate and temperature that the hydrangea shrub is growing in will affect how much color is retained in the dried flower. It’s not a perfect system, but what is when we’re talking about the climate and weather? Ideally, you are looking for a healthy plant that has been grown in appropriate conditions. You can read more about that in the Essential Guide to Hydrangeas.

Mother nature and plant care aside, timing when you cut the blooms is the most important factor that you can control. If you left the blooms dry on the shrub they can lose all of their color. If you cut the blooms too early they can wilt (as opposed to dry with their petals retaining their shape).How to dry hydrangea flowers to keep color

In order to retain the most color, you will need to let flowers partially dry on the shrub first. Depending on when your plant blooms, you should start checking on the flowers mid-way through the bloom time. The color will be fading but they will still hold most of their shape, and they will start to take on a papery feel. Try cutting blooms when there is still some color remaining to get the a dried flower with color that lasts.How to dry hydrangea flowers

Remove all of the leaves from the stem (or at least the part of the stem that will be submerged) and put the flowers in a vase with an inch or two of water. Place the vase in a cool area, away from direct sunlight. The water in the vase will help to slow the drying process, the bloom will preserve better with a slower transition. Once the water is gone, they will be dried, and will last indefinitely.The easy way to dry hydrangea flowers to keep color

You can touch them to see how dry they are. They should feel papery.How to dry hydrangea flowers to keep color

Dried hydrangea flowers are very delicate so it is often better to create your craft or dried flower arrangement before they dry. That’s precisely what I did with this hydrangea wreath. I made the wreath with partially dried blooms and allowed the drying process to finish on the front door! See how to make the wreath here.

Dried Hydrangea Wreath DIY


Preserving the Ornamental Garden means capturing what is left behind when the plants start to fade

About the Author : Stephanie RoseAn artistic gardener aiming to feed the body & soul through an urban potager garden & a community veggie plot in Vancouver.View all posts by Stephanie Rose

  1. Rose Field
    Rose FieldJuly 23,14

    Thanks for the advice. Gorgeous pictures!

  2. Indian roommates
    Indian roommatesAugust 25,14

    Wow!Its Awesome

  3. Stephanie Rose
    Stephanie RoseJuly 12,16


  4. Joy
    JoyJuly 14,16

    Hi Stephanie .. I went with my instinct years ago with my Little Lamb blooms and still have them to this day. I just cut them when they were their most gorgeous and let them dry in the vase I was going to keep them in .. no water … I guess I was just lucky it all worked out ? haha

  5. gail
    gailJuly 19,16

    ohhh, I think it’s too late for mine. But I’m going to try this. I’ve tried before and it worked (mostly)

    thanks for sharing at Talk of the Town

  6. Nikki Gwin
    Nikki GwinJuly 21,16

    I accidentally dried some this way once. LOL
    :) Gwingal

  7. Stacey Keeling
    Stacey KeelingJuly 21,16

    Everybody’s favorite flower! I love your ideas.

    Thank you for sharing at Thoughts of Home on Thursday. Pinning. :)

  8. Sharon
    SharonNovember 15,16

    A vase of water used for drying, who would have thought?

  9. Lisa
    LisaAugust 3,17

    I’m going to try this over the weekend. I also heard that I should spray the blossoms with hairspray. Have you ever heard of this or tried it?

  10. Nancy
    NancyAugust 6,17

    I thought I heard years ago to spray your dried flowers with hair spray to preserve them longer; anyone else heard or tried this?

    • Stephanie Rose
      Stephanie RoseAugust 8,17

      I have not but I can’t think why it would help. I can imagine the hairspray would make them sticky and collect dust though.

  11. Laura toomey
    Laura toomeyAugust 21,17

    Thanks for sharing ~ I will give this a try. I love my hydrangea bush and now I can save the blooms!

  12. Jane Huffman
    Jane HuffmanOctober 19,17

    Stephanie, Thanks for all the tips. If I understand correctly, we can skip the drying in a container with water and just build our wreath and let it dry naturally. I just picked mine & they seem to be already somewhat dry. Thanks, Jane

    • Stephanie
      StephanieOctober 19,17

      Hi Jane, yes. The more slowly you dry them the more color they retain, but if they are semi-dry now, that is a good time to make a wreath. The become a lot more fragile as they get drier so it becomes harder to craft with them.

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