Plant Taxonomy of Invincibelle Spirit Hydrangeas:
Characteristics of Invincibelle Spirit Hydrangeas:
Planting Zones for Invincibelle Spirit Hydrangeas:
Sun and Soil Requirements:
Outstanding Feature of Invincibelle Spirit Hydrangeas:
At the time of this writing (2010), Invincibelle Spirit was being marketed as the first pink-flowering hydrangea of the arborescens (or "smooth leaf") type. Previously, the top of the line in the arborescens group was 'Annabelle.' Annabelle has been highly valued for its hardiness, the size of its flowers, and the fact that it blooms on new wood (see below). But Annabelle's flowers come only in white; the public has been craving a pink Annabelle bush, but with the same traits, otherwise, valued in Annabelle. Invincibelle Spirit hydrangeas try to fit the bill, stepping into the limelight as the original "pink Annabelle" bush. However, in my own landscaping, at least, their flower heads fail to attain Annabelle size.
Overall, I'd have to say I'm somewhat disappointed in these plants. I much prefer Incrediball, which was introduced to the market at about the same time. True, Incrediball is just another white-flowered type. But its flower head is enormous, and the sepals age to a more pleasing color than those on the "pink Annabelle wannabe."
Wildlife Attracted by Invincibelle Spirit Hydrangeas:
Uses in Landscaping:
Some suggested landscape uses for Invincibelle Spirit hydrangea bushes:
- As specimen plants
- Massed along a property line to form a border
- In foundation beds
- In woodland gardens
Also, because the flower heads consist mainly of sepals, they persist through autumn (although they fade to a tannish color), adding visual interest to the fall yard even after all their pink color is gone. During summer, I cut the flower heads off for use in dried arrangements as they fade, because I think they look dirty when juxtaposed to the fresh new pink flowers that emerge on other branches.
Invincibelle Spirit Hydrangea Care: Pruning:
The beauty of Invincibelle Spirit hydrangea bushes and other hydrangeas in the smooth leaf group is that they bloom on new wood (new growth). This means 2 things:
- No more worrying, "Did I prune too late last year, thereby losing flower buds?"
- Flower buds won't be killed by winter's cold.
Growers generally prune Invincibelle Spirit hydrangea bushes (if, indeed, any pruning is called for at all) sometime between the first hard frost of fall and early spring. If you so desire, pruning cuts can be made right down to the ground; new shoots will be generated.