This newest type of hydrangea is simply fabulous! Cascade Hydrangea® earns its name from the unique ability to set flower buds down the entire length of its graceful horizontal stems. The effect is a bit like a garland, swag, or indeed, a cascade of flowers.

At present, there is only one Cascade Hydrangea® available: Fairytrail Bride®. This plant created an instant sensation in 2018 when it debuted at the Chelsea Flower Show and earned the prestigious Plant of the Year award under the name Runaway Bride hydrangea. The work of renown plant breeder Ushio Sakazaki, the genius behind the game-changing Supertunia Vista Bubblegum petunia, it represents the apotheosis of contemporary hydrangea breeding. Here's how to grow it.

Hardiness/climate

Cascade Hydrangea is a hybrid that combines multiple species and varieties to develop the flower power and bud set that makes it so distinctive. As such, its a bit difficult to completely ascertain its cold tolerance. It is currently believed to be hardy in the ground only to USDA zone 7. However, determined gardeners in colder climates can try growing it in a container that can be moved to a cool, bright spot in winter. The spot should be cool enough that the plant does not enter active growth, but protected from prolonged sub-freezing temperatures. 

 

Size

Fairytrail Bride Cascade Hydrangea is equally tall as it is wide, and it develops a strong horizontal presence in the garden. 

Light

Plant Cascade Hydrangeas in sun to part sun. The ideal spot would receive high filtered light all day. 

Soil

The typical moist, well-drained soil is exactly what Cascade Hydrangeas appreciate. Fairytrail Bride has white flowers, which are not impacted by soil chemistry, so whether you grow it in acidic to slightly alkaline soil is not important.

Fertilizer

Powerful bloomers like Cascade Hydrangeas benefit from extra fertilizer to increase bud set and prolong the bloom. We recommend an application of granular rose fertilizer in early spring, then monthly through late June/early July.

Flower Color

The flowers of Fairytrail Bride Cascade Hydrangea are white, and cannot be changed through soil conditions. If they are wilting or browning quickly, this typically indicates that the plant has dried out or otherwise experienced water stress.

Pruning

Cascade Hydrangeas primarily bloom on old wood, and should be treated as such - in other words, avoid trimming or cutting them back, though entire branches can be removed to develop the habit or shape you prefer. If flowers persist after winter, they can be traced back to the closest set of buds and snipped off.

Cascade hydrangea problems

Cascade Hydrangea are largely trouble-free; if deer or rabbits are an issue in your yard, however, plants should be protected with netting or a repellent, as both are fond of eating the tender flower buds as they develop and that can remove the flowering ability for the entire season.