I Love the Wee White Hydrangea

Jul 9, 2022 | Love This!

Name:   Invincibelle Wee White®  Hydrangea, aka Hydrangea arborescens ‘NCHA5’ USPP 30,296, Can 6,345

Type of Plant:  A small variety of our native smooth hydrangea, hardy to a zone 3. Mine has stayed under 20” high, but these can grow to 30” given richer soil.

Why I Love This Plant:    Many love the Annabelle, Blush and Invincibelle Spirit arborescens Hydrangas, but don’t have room for them. And many gardeners want a long-flowering, easy small shrub for putting in perennial gardens or the front layer in shrub borders or foundation beds. Wee White is the plant for all of these situations. It grows well in full sun or part-shade, and begins to flower at the end of June in my region.

A Word to the Wise:  As the flowers on this shrub fade, clip them off just under the spent bloom to improve the look of the plant, and occasionally stimulate more flowers. This Hydrangea blooms on new growth, so it will always bloom even if the winter was cold or the plant was trimmed back.

This is the Wee White Hydrangea in my garden. Frankly, I’m thinking I may need to add two more to this bed! The flowers are very large even though the shrub is short. These never flop for me, but stay sturdy on the stem.

Planting short shrubs is a good way to create a lower-maintenance garden. Wee White is perfect for adding flowers to a dwarf-conifer area.


  1. Patricia Murray-Smith

    When is the best time to prune back hydrangeas and how much do you prune?
    I saw you on CBS Sunday Morning (You were fantastic but didn’t answer the dilemma that most of us have.
    Your garden looked inspired 🙂
    Enjoy the rest of the Summer,

    • CL Fornari

      If you’re talking about the blue mopheads and lace caps, you NEVER prune them back. The only pruning is to wait until late-spring once the leaves/flowerbuds that have survived the winter break dormancy on the canes, and remove any dead, bare canes that have no leaves. Never try and make them shorter. Never cut back in fall or too early in the spring or you will have no flowers.


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