Climbing hydrangeas (genus Hydrangea)
In general, the term Hydrangea refers to a genus of shrubby plants, perennial, more commonly known under the name of Hydrangea, originating in the Far East, particularly China and Japan. They are very appreciated plants for the splendid ornamental effect assured by its flowers. The hydrangeas are characterized precisely by its floral apparatus, consisting of inflorescences (corymbs), with a rounded shape and, in the various varieties, distinguished by a wide range of colors.
These beautiful plants allow to embellish and decorate a wide variety of environments, both indoors and outdoors, in particular, the climbing species can be used to "cover" tree trunks, with a really suggestive aesthetic effect, to decorate gates or fences, and also to frame front doors, color pergolas or gazebos and all that fantasy can suggest.
There are several species, all more or less used, but the most widespread and cultivated in Italy are Hydrangea petiolaris and Hydrangea seemani, but in the course of the article we will also mention other species present on the territory.
Among the other species, the Hydrangea anomala cordata is one of the least developed in height, in fact it reaches a maximum of 2 meters and is characterized by white inflorescences similar to those of the Hydrangea petiolaris, with which also common leaves fall, but also these smaller and more markedly serrated, while its branches form a much denser weave. It is suitable as a ground cover and prefers to grow in shady areas without excessive solar radiation. It grows better on fresh and moist soils.The Schizophragma hydrangeoides reaches about 150 cm, its leaf is dark green, heart-shaped, sharp, thick and leathery, with reddish veins and a toothed margin. It blooms from May to June exhibiting slightly larger white inflorescences than those of the Hydrangea petiolaris. It shows itself as a beautiful creeper with slender but very thick branches. The flowers have a peculiar characteristic that consists of a bract (leaf at the base of the flower) particularly developed so as to resemble a white leaf. The variety Schizophragma hydrangeoides 'Roseum', is endowed with particular floral bracts of a beautiful pink color, whose intensity changes with the exposure to the sun. It adapts to different climates even if it prefers shady locations.There is another variety, the Schizophragma hydrangeoides 'Moonlight', which produces extraordinary heart-shaped leaves, with a truly spectacular effect. This is a new cultivar created with this aesthetic purpose. The leaves are also distinguished by an artistic contrast between the light green color of the leaf blade, with the very dark ribs. In autumn these romantic leaves are tinged with a warm orange tending to red.Climbing hydrangea: The name's origin
Remaining on the subject of romanticism, which is well suited to this kind of plants, the origin of the common name Ortensia cannot be omitted. In the second half of the 1700s, a well-known naturalist with an adventurous heart, named Philibert Commerson, went to the Far East in search of new plants. Among these, some species of Hydrangea were reported in Europe. Here he fell in love with the beautiful Hortense Lapaute, and with it began a beautiful love story. For this reason he decided to baptize the plant he discovered with the name of his beloved: Ortensia.