23 Ultimate Companions To Plant With Hydrangeas

Hydrangeas are the perfect addition to most gardens because they can thrive in all sorts of conditions. But if you want to take your garden to the next level, it’s a great idea to pair hydrangeas with other plants that complement them. In this guide, I’ll show you what to plant with hydrangeas, so you can have a garden that’s full of color and life all year round!

Vintage blue garden bench is focal point of this Midwest garden with hydrangeas, ornamental grasses, coneflowers and hibiscus.YayImages

Benefits of Companion Planting

Companion planting is an age-old gardening technique where different plants are grown close together to benefit one or both plants. For hydrangeas, companion planting can offer several significant advantages.

Firstly, it can help to improve soil health by promoting a diverse range of microorganisms.

Additionally, certain companion plants can repel pests and reduce the risk of diseases, creating a healthier garden environment.

Lastly, the right companion plants can enhance the overall visual appeal of your garden, creating a stunning and cohesive landscape.

By choosing plants that have similar growing requirements, you can create a garden that not only looks beautiful but is also easier to maintain, providing continuous interest and color throughout the year.

Hydrangeas growing in a garden with companion plants.YayImages

Best Companion Plants for Hydrangeas

Let’s take a look at some of the best plants and flowers to plant with hydrangeas:

1. Hostas

Top view of hosta foliage.YayImages

Hostas are a perfect companion to plant with hydrangeas due to their large leaves that provide a beautiful contrast. These shade-loving perennials come in a variety of colors, sizes, and textures, making them incredibly versatile.

Hostas thrive in the same shaded, moist environments as hydrangeas, making them an ideal pair. Their foliage can range from deep green to blue, gold, or even variegated patterns, adding depth and interest to your garden. Additionally, hostas are low-maintenance and can help to suppress weeds, creating a neat and tidy garden bed.

2. Ferns

closeup image of maidenhair fernYayImages

Ferns, especially maidenhair ferns, offer a feathery texture that complements the bold flowers of hydrangeas. Maidenhair ferns are known for their delicate, lacy fronds that sway gracefully in the breeze. They both prefer shady, damp areas, creating a serene and cool garden spot that is visually appealing and tranquil.

Ferns can add a sense of softness and movement to your garden, making them an excellent choice for underplanting around hydrangeas. Their ability to thrive in low-light conditions also makes them perfect for filling in shaded areas where other plants might struggle.

3. Astilbes

Astilbe perennial flowers growing in a garden in the shade.YayImages

Astilbes bring a pop of color and fine texture to the garden with their feathery plumes of flowers. These perennial plants come in a range of colors, from soft pastels to vibrant reds and purples, and they thrive in the same moist, shaded conditions as hydrangeas.

Astilbes are particularly effective when planted in mass, creating a stunning visual impact. Their blooms can last for several weeks, providing continuous interest throughout the growing season. Additionally, astilbes are deer-resistant, making them a great choice for gardens in areas with high deer populations.

4. Coral Bells

Heuchera, or coral bells, a perennial plant in full bloom grown in a botanic garden.YayImages

Heucheras, or Coral Bells, are known for their vibrant foliage and delicate flowers. Their colorful leaves range from deep purple to bright green, providing a striking contrast to hydrangeas. Heucheras thrive in partial shade and well-drained soil, making them a versatile addition to any garden.

They are also relatively low-maintenance and can tolerate a variety of soil conditions. The delicate, bell-shaped flowers of heucheras add a touch of elegance and can attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies, enhancing the biodiversity of your garden.

5. Japanese Forest Grass

Japanese forest grass growing in a shaded garden.YayImages

Japanese Forest Grass adds texture to the garden with its arching stems and vibrant foliage. This ornamental grass comes in various shades, including golden yellow, bright green, and variegated patterns, creating a beautiful backdrop for the bold hydrangea blooms.

Japanese Forest Grass prefers the same shaded, moist conditions as hydrangeas and can thrive in areas where other grasses might struggle. Its cascading habit adds movement and softness to the garden, making it an excellent choice for planting along pathways or in mixed borders.

6. Solomon’s Seal

Solomons seal plant with yellow blooms covered in rain droplets.YayImages

Solomon’s Seal is an elegant perennial with arching stems and delicate, bell-shaped flowers that dangle gracefully beneath the foliage. It thrives in the same shaded, woodland settings as hydrangeas, creating a cohesive and tranquil garden scene.

Solomon’s Seal is known for its ability to thrive in difficult growing conditions, including dry shade, making it a versatile and resilient choice for underplanting around hydrangeas. Its variegated varieties add an extra layer of visual interest, brightening up shady garden areas.

7. Lungwort

Vivid and bright pulmonaria flowers on green leaves background close up.YayImages

Lungwort (Pulmonaria) is valued for its spotted leaves and early spring flowers, which come in shades of blue, pink, and white. It prefers shady areas with moist soil, making it a perfect companion plant for hydrangeas.

Lungwort’s unique foliage adds interest even when not in bloom, and its early flowers provide an important nectar source for pollinators emerging in the spring. Lungwort is also deer-resistant and can tolerate a variety of soil conditions, making it a reliable and attractive addition to your garden.

8. Lambs Ear

Lambs ear plant growing in a rock garden.YayImages

Lambs Ear offers soft, silvery foliage that contrasts beautifully with the bold hydrangea flowers. This perennial ground cover thrives in well-drained soil and partial shade, creating a visually appealing and texturally diverse garden bed.

Lambs Ear is particularly effective in adding a soft, velvety texture to the garden, which can enhance the overall sensory experience. It is also drought-tolerant once established, making it a low-maintenance option for areas where water conservation is a priority.

9. Jacob’s Ladder

Jacobs ladder plant with purple flowers blooming in a garden.YayImages

Jacob’s Ladder (Polemonium) features fern-like foliage and clusters of blue, purple, or white flowers. It prefers partial to full shade and moist soil, making it an excellent companion plant for hydrangeas.

The delicate, ladder-like arrangement of its leaves adds a unique texture to the garden, while its flowers provide a splash of color in the spring and early summer. Jacob’s Ladder is also relatively low-maintenance and can tolerate a variety of soil conditions, making it a versatile and attractive choice for mixed borders and woodland gardens.

10. Bleeding Heart

Bleeding heart perennial flowers growing in a garden.YayImages

Bleeding Heart (Dicentra) is known for its unique, heart-shaped flowers that dangle from arching stems in shades of pink, red, or white. It thrives in the same shady, moist conditions as hydrangeas, adding a touch of romance to the garden.

Bleeding Heart is a spring bloomer, providing early-season color and interest. Its delicate, fern-like foliage also adds texture to the garden, creating a beautiful contrast with the larger leaves of hydrangeas. Bleeding Heart is relatively low-maintenance and can tolerate a variety of soil conditions, making it a reliable and charming addition to your garden.

11. Flowering Dogwood

White dogwood bush flowers.YayImages

Flowering Dogwood trees provide dappled shade and stunning spring blossoms in shades of white, pink, or red. Their canopy creates a perfect environment for hydrangeas, which prefer some shade during the hottest part of the day.

Flowering Dogwoods are also valued for their attractive fall foliage and bright red berries, which add interest to the garden throughout the year. These trees can help to create a layered garden design, with the Dogwoods providing the upper canopy, the hydrangeas forming the mid-layer, and lower-growing companion plants filling in the understory.

12. Foamflower

Close up image of pink tiarella sky rocket flowersYayImages

Foamflower (Tiarella) is a charming ground cover with delicate, frothy flowers and attractive, heart-shaped foliage. It thrives in shady, moist conditions, complementing the environment that hydrangeas love. Foamflower’s foliage often has interesting variegation or patterns, adding visual interest even when the plant is not in bloom.

Its delicate white or pink flowers appear in late spring to early summer, creating a lovely contrast with the larger blooms of hydrangeas. Foamflower is also deer-resistant and relatively low-maintenance, making it a practical and beautiful choice for your garden.

13. Wild Ginger

Wild ginger groundcover growing across a garden floor.YayImages

Wild Ginger (Asarum) provides lush, evergreen ground cover with heart-shaped leaves that create a dense mat of foliage. It prefers the same shady, moist environments as hydrangeas and helps keep the soil cool and moist, which is beneficial for hydrangea roots.

Wild Ginger is also known for its unique, hidden flowers that appear at ground level, adding an element of surprise to the garden. This plant is particularly useful for preventing soil erosion and suppressing weeds, making it a valuable addition to shaded garden areas.

14. Blue Fescue

Image of blue fescue, Festuca glauca grass.Hans / Pixabay

Blue Fescue adds a unique texture and color to the garden with its spiky, blue-grey foliage. This ornamental grass prefers well-drained soil and partial shade, making it a good companion plant for hydrangeas.

Blue Fescue’s compact, mounding habit makes it ideal for edging borders or adding contrast to mixed plantings. Its drought-tolerant nature also makes it a low-maintenance option for gardens with varying moisture levels. Blue Fescue can provide year-round interest, as its foliage remains attractive even in the winter months.

15. Corydalis

Little purple corydalis flowers growing in a shade garden.YayImages

Corydalis offers delicate, tubular flowers in shades of blue, pink, purple, or yellow, depending on the variety. It thrives in shaded areas with moist soil, creating a lovely underplanting for hydrangeas.

Corydalis is known for its long blooming period, often flowering from spring through early summer. Its finely divided foliage adds a soft texture to the garden, and its flowers provide an important nectar source for pollinators. Corydalis is also deer-resistant and relatively low-maintenance, making it a reliable and attractive addition to your garden.

16. Cranesbill

Closeup of a beautiful garden with a Wood Cranes Bill flowers and green leaves background. A blooming crane bill flower in a botanical garden. A blossom crane bill flower in the midday sun.YayImages

Cranesbill, or hardy geranium, provides continuous blooms throughout the growing season with its delicate, five-petaled flowers in shades of pink, blue, purple, or white. It prefers partial shade and well-drained soil, complementing hydrangeas perfectly.

Cranesbill is known for its resilience and ability to thrive in a variety of conditions, making it a versatile and low-maintenance choice for your garden. Its mounding habit and attractive foliage make it an excellent ground cover or border plant, adding color and texture to the garden.

17. Goat’s Beard

Aruncus dioicus blooming in the summertime. Flowers of Goats beard. Bush of Aruncus dioicus. Beautiful blooming white fluffy flowers of the Aruncus dioicus bush in the garden on a bright sunny day.YayImages

Goat’s Beard (Aruncus) is a tall perennial with feathery white flower spikes that resemble those of astilbes. It thrives in the same shady, moist conditions as hydrangeas, adding height and drama to the garden.

Goat’s Beard is particularly effective in creating a backdrop for shorter plants or in mixed borders where its tall, airy flowers can stand out. This plant is also deer-resistant and relatively low-maintenance, making it a practical choice for woodland gardens and shaded borders.

18. Speedwell

Speedwell or Veronica spicata growing in a garden.YayImages

Speedwell, or Veronica, offers spikes of blue, pink, or white flowers that attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies. It is tolerant to various growing conditions, making it a great companion plant for hydrangeas.

Speedwell’s upright flower spikes add vertical interest to the garden, while its compact, mounding habit makes it ideal for edging borders or filling in gaps between larger plants. Speedwell is also relatively low-maintenance and can tolerate a variety of soil conditions, making it a versatile and attractive choice for your garden.

19. Daylilies

Orange perennial daylilies growing in a gardenYayImages

Daylilies provide vibrant color throughout the summer with their trumpet-shaped flowers in a wide range of colors. They thrive in well-drained soil and partial shade, adding a burst of color alongside hydrangeas.

Daylilies are known for their resilience and ability to thrive in a variety of conditions, making them a low-maintenance and reliable choice for your garden. Their long blooming period and ability to naturalize make them an excellent choice for mixed borders and mass plantings, where they can create a stunning display of color.

20. Begonia

begonia flower for front patioYayImages

Begonias offer a wide range of flower colors and leaf shapes, making them a versatile and colorful companion plant for hydrangeas. They thrive in shaded, moist environments, creating a lush and vibrant garden display.

Begonias are known for their long blooming period, often flowering from late spring through fall, providing continuous interest throughout the growing season. Their attractive foliage and compact habit make them ideal for filling in gaps between larger plants or adding color to shaded borders and containers.

21. Azaleas

Rhododendron flowers. Azaleas flowers in the garden. Spring nature background. Soft focus blurred image.YayImages

Azaleas are a classic companion plant for hydrangeas, with their overlapping bloom times and similar growing requirements. Both thrive in acidic, well-drained soil and partial shade, creating a harmonious and colorful garden display.

Azaleas are known for their stunning spring blooms in shades of pink, red, white, and purple, which can create a breathtaking spectacle when planted alongside hydrangeas. Their evergreen or semi-evergreen foliage provides year-round interest and can help to create a layered garden design with hydrangeas forming the mid-layer and lower-growing companion plants filling in the understory.

22. Catmint

Close-up image of Catmint flowersYayImages

Catmint, or Nepeta, adds a soft, lavender-blue hue and aromatic foliage to the garden. It prefers well-drained soil and partial shade, complementing the hydrangeas’ bold blooms. Catmint is known for its long blooming period and ability to attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies, enhancing the biodiversity of your garden.

Its compact, mounding habit makes it ideal for edging borders or filling in gaps between larger plants. Catmint is also drought-tolerant and low-maintenance, making it a practical and attractive choice for gardens with varying moisture levels.

23. Sweet Woodruff

Sweet Woodruff with white flowers growing in the shade of a garden.YayImages

Sweet Woodruff is a charming addition to any garden with its delicate, star-shaped flowers and fragrant foliage. It thrives in shady, moist areas, making it an excellent companion for hydrangeas.

Sweet Woodruff’s low-growing habit and spreading nature create a lush carpet of greenery under hydrangea bushes. Its sweet scent adds another layer of sensory delight to the garden.

What to plant with hydrangeas.YayImages

Conclusion

Choosing the right companions to plant with your hydrangeas can transform your garden into a lush, vibrant haven. By selecting plants with similar growing requirements, you can ensure a harmonious and thriving garden. Whether you opt for the bold foliage of Hostas or the delicate blooms of Astilbes, there’s a perfect companion plant for every hydrangea.

The best plants to grow with hydrangeas.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top