Hydrangea, made popular for its ability to thrive in partial shade and for its extremely long bloom period has seen a significant resurgence of interest by the homeowner and landscape professionals in recent years. This was mainly brought about by claims of newly developed colors, new flower forms and compact plants capable of being included in perennial borders. In addition the new hydrangeas are suggested to be winter hardy in areas never before considered. Although still being developed, The Earth-Kind® hydrangea trial protocol will require the replicated evaluation of traits that these new varieties claim to possess. Characteristics like plant form, flower size, color, and quantity and bloom duration will be considered in the evaluation. In addition plant vigor, hardiness and disease resistance will also be examined in the trials as well. Trial location is also a consideration. With three in Minnesota the fourth in Iowa and a proposed site in Wisconsin, this evaluation provides the opportunity to examine these plants in various soil types and climates as well. The following is a list of Earth-Kind® Hydrangea Trial sites.
- Municipal Park in Dilworth, Minnesota (right next to Moorhead, Minnesota)
- North Central Research and Outreach Center in Grand Rapids, Minnesota
- Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chanhassen, Minnesota
- ISU Horticultural Research Station north of Ames, Iowa
- Boerner Botanical Gardens in Milwaukee, Wisconsin