’Harmony’ is an unusual oakleaf hydrangea. Rather than being conical the shape and mass of the flower head is rotund and mounded, rather like the bloom on the Chinese Snowball viburnum.
Attempts to give it a common name that reflects the appearance of the full congested bloom range from "Sheep’s Head Hydrangea" to Gene’s suggestion that it is a bit like the heap of mashed potatoes in the bowl your family serves at Thanksgiving before Uncle Ellis digs in and ruins the presentation (often before or even during grace). It is much more handsome than those names suggest as it is stunning as a mature shrub: large of stature, foliage that turns dark maroon in fall, and breathtaking white blooms in late spring. We got our stock plants from the Aldridge family in Alabama who introduced both ’Harmony’ and ’Snowflake’ many years ago. Harmony was shown to them by J C McDaniel, also a native of AL but then a professor of horticulture at the University of Illinois, Urbana. Everything we’ve read about professor McDaniel makes us think of all the generous nursery folks we’ve been lucky to know. There was a time when generosity with plants was more important than patent royalties, and good plants were to be shared. Were it still so. Deciduous, 6 to 8’, for sun or part shade, native and unique. Zones 6-9.