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Combine hydrangeas with other plants: These species are perfect for partial shade and sun

Hydrangeas are already a real eye-catcher, even when they stand alone. I do not think anyone can deny that. But nevertheless, you can increase the flowering dream with a few suitable combination partners. But not only flowering plants can be perfectly combined with hydrangea. Surprisingly, grasses also look very charming in this company. We have put together a few ideas of what you can combine hydrangeas with.

Combine hydrangeas with other plants

Plants should have the same requirements for the location

Combining hydrangeas - tips and lists for plants depending on their location

Before you indiscriminately combine hydrangeas with other plants, of course, make sure that the location is also suitable. Hydrangeas need a semi-shaded location, which for some species can be sunnier, if then provide sufficient water, because the bushes need quite a lot of it. A nutrient-rich and neutral soil, which is not too calcareous, is optimal. Accordingly, you need to find planting partners that also have such demands on the site or are more tolerant in this regard and can adapt.

Combining hydrangeas with other plants and flowers - list of ideas

Especially in the sun, it is important to make sure that all plants get enough water. So, if you pair the hydrangea bushes with plants that deprive them of water, this could lead to the fact that sooner or later the bushes will die to you. Therefore, reach for plants that are not too competitive.

Ideas for sunny location and panicle hydrangea.

Combining hydrangeas - panicle hydrangea for sunny location

Risen hydrangeas are preferably in the sun. Plants of almost all sizes are suitable. So, lower trees or taller shrubs can be chosen, but also if you want to combine hydrangeas with perennials, the choice is quite large. You can put them together with the following flowers, among others:

  • Blood Hazel (Corylus maxima ‘Purpurea’).
  • Scented nettle (Agastache)
  • Yew (Taxus baccata)
  • Delphinium (Delphinium)
  • Red wig shrub (Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’)
  • Iris (Iris)
  • Echinacea (Rudbeckia)
  • Soft lady’s mantle (Alchemilla mollis)

Planting hydrangeas with coneflowers in a flower bed


Although the panicle hydrangea in itself impresses with more unusual flower shapes and colors, in principle, it can be wonderfully combined with anything, without the plants visually suppress each other. The bright colors of these hydrangea flowers go well with everything, but are particularly effective against a darker foliage.

Combining hydrangeas in partial shade

A white-green garden design looks noble

If you have a hydrangea variety that prefers partial shade , you should accordingly choose other flowers as combination partners. Peasant hydrangea (H. macrophylla) and plate hydrangea (H. serrata), for example, are such varieties, as well as oakleaf hydrangea (H. quercifolia). If you would like to combine hydrangeas with grasses, this location is best.

  • Flowering dogwood (Cornus)
  • Hosta (Hosta)
  • Autumn anemone (Anemone hupehensis)
  • Japanese ornamental maple (Acer japonicum)
  • Cherry laurel (Prunus laurocerasus)
  • Prachtspiere (Astilbe)
  • Purple bellflower (Heuchera)
  • Rhododendron
  • Show-leaf (Rodgersia)
  • Sedges (Carex)
  • Star umbels (Astrantia)
  • Cranesbill (Geranium)
  • Witch hazel (Hamamelis)

What to plant snowball hydrangeas with?

Snowball hydrangeas grow in semi-shady and sunny places


The peasant and snowball hydrangeas, in turn, feel comfortable in partial shade, as well as sunny locations. So, which plants are best to partner with depends on where you planted your shrub. If it fits either of these characteristics, the following varieties are suitable for combining with hydrangeas in the garden:

  • Flowering dogwood (Cornus)
  • Monkshood (Aconitum)
  • Hosta (Hosta)
  • Tall stonecrop (Sedum)
  • High flame flower (Phlox paniculata)
  • Ball thistle (Echinops)
  • Purple bellflower (Heuchera)
  • Starthistle (Astrantia)

Combining alliums and grasses with hydrangeas

Since these types of hydrangeas are usually chosen with bright and delicate flower colors, accompanying plants with brighter colors also go very well with them. However, a great contrast is provided not only by strong colors, but also by plants with a more unusual look, such as ornamental grasses.

Shady to semi-shady location

Combining hydrangeas - velvet hydrangea prefers sunny places

Velvet hydrangea (H. sargentiana) is one of the hydrangea species that prefer such a place in the garden. There are some pretty flowers and plants that you can use to underplant this shrub. Here’s how you could combine these hydrangeas in the bed:

  • Christmas roses (Helleborus niger)
  • Scented violets (Viola odorata)
  • Hosta (Hosta)
  • Purple bellflower (Heuchera)
  • Autumn anemone (Anemone hupehensis)
  • Lily of the valley (Convallaria majalis)
  • Rhododendron
  • Foam flower (Tiarella)
  • Ornamental grasses

Velvet hydrangea with purple flowers for the garden

In itself, the velvet hydrangea, like the plate hydrangea, has beautiful flowers, but they are not as dominant as some other varieties. For this reason, more discreet partners are a better choice. After all, the delicate flowers of the shrub should be emphasized with the help of the other plants, but not compete with them. For example, those with interesting leaf colors are well suited. However, if you want a few more blooms, then flowers with smaller flower sizes and more subtle colors are ideal.

Pair different types of hydrangeas

Cottage garden with blue hydrangea flowers in the flower bed

Even if they want to combine different hydrangeas, they should, of course, take into account the requirements for the location. They already know which species prefer shade, partial shade or sun .

Multiple varieties are a wonderful way to extend the flowering stages. Each species blooms at different times, and if you create even transitions, you can avoid flowerless periods.

For example, the plate hydrangea blooms several weeks before the farmer’s hydrangea. Both do very well in partial shade, so you can plant them comfortably as combination partners.

Combining hydrangeas with roses

Combine hydrangeas with roses of any color

If you would like to combine hydrangeas with other flowers, the queen of flowers is also available – the rose. The extraordinarily large variety of rose species makes it possible to pair hydrangea shrubs with them as well. Not only in terms of location, you can quickly find something suitable, but also in terms of flower colors. Some hydrangeas have flowers with a rather rare color – blue. Take advantage of this rarity and plant next to it a rose with a delicate pink, orange or yellow, for example. If you prefer to be more discreet, you can also choose a plain white for both plants. In this way, you will create a noble garden corner in white and green, which is no less impressive than colorful combinations.

Combining hydrangeas in the garden - panicle hydrangea in white with pink companion plants

Colorful blooms in the garden

Combining hydrangeas with bright colors of other flowers

Hydrangeas need a lot of space, so combining them in containers is not recommended

Combining hydrangeas in a container is difficult due to lack of space