When to Plant Hydrangeas in Tennessee – Best Time

Written by

William Golder


Dorian Goodwin

when to plant hydrangeas in tennessee

Tennessee’s mild climate is home to many plants and floras, like hydrangeas, especially since they grow well in zones 3 to 9.

For this reason, many take advantage of the state’s ideal climate to plant these summer-blooming blossoms in March or September.

Therefore, if you also want to achieve the best-looking yard, read further to learn more about when to plant hydrangeas in Tennessee!

Best Time to Plant Hydrangeas in Tennessee

1. The best month and season to plant hydrangeas


Since hydrangeas growing zones are from 3 to 9, which include Tennessee’s planting zones of 5 to 8, these flowering plants undoubtedly grow well in the state.

But the climate in early spring and autumn specifically helps them to thrive because no signs of frost are evident during these times.

They grow well in mild climates. For this reason, planting hydrangeas in the ground in March, just after the temperature rises and frost disappears, is ideal.

But planting in November, before the temperature drops, is also the perfect schedule for achieving the best growth.

2. Planting dates in different areas in Tennessee


Planting hydrangeas in yard for the different locations in Tennessee may differ according to where you live because each place has its own frost dates. Ideally, it is best to grow them before and after the freezing periods, as mentioned above.

You can refer to this table for some of the frost dates in different regions:

Location Last Frost Date First Frost Date
Bloomingdale April 16 October 24
Memphis March 24 November 9
Knoxville April 19 October 22
Jackson April 9 October 24
Newport April 14 October 24

As a general rule of thumb, planting hydrangeas after the last frost date and six weeks before the first killing frost are ideal.

For example, if you live in the city of Memphis, you can plant them around March 25 or September 28.

However, if you are in Newport and prefer planting in the fall, you can grow them around September 12, six weeks before its first frost on October 24.

3. Planting hydrangeas indoors


Hydrangeas are a flexible type of plant because not only do they grow well outdoors, but some varieties also thrive indoors, like the mophead hydrangea!

However, for this variety to flourish and become well-bloomed as it grows, having a proper planting environment is essential.

Here are some points you must consider when planting indoors:

  1. Plant in pots with drainage holes to encourage an ideal water flow when you irrigate the soil. Too much water can cause decaying and fungal problems.
  2. Place hydrangeas near a south-facing window, which can give sufficient sunlight. But ensure to move them away from the scorching afternoon sun.
  3. Use a proper soil pH. In general, an acidic soil of 5.5 encourages blue-colored blooms; 6.5 pH produces purple floras, and an alkaline pH of 7.0 creates red-blooming blossoms.

4. Planting hydrangeas outdoors


When landscaping with hydrangeas outdoors, doing so under tree cover is ideal because they thrive in partially shaded areas. To grow them successfully, here is what you need to do when planting them:

  1. Establish a distance between hydrangeas of around 3-10 ft.
  2. Remove dead roots around the root ball after pulling them out of their containers.
  3. Create a hole with the same length as the root ball, but three times wider than its diameter.
  4. After planting, water thoroughly.

5. How late can I plant hydrangeas in Tennessee?

You can plant hydrangeas anytime as long as the climate is mild and the ground is not covered with frost. But, it is necessary to note that growing them in too high temperatures, such as in the summer, is not ideal.

However, you can plant them as late as May when growing them indoors. But ensure to give them enough moisture to keep them thriving.

Growing Hydrangeas in Tennessee

1. Apply the proper fertilizer.

A slow-release and water-soluble type of fertilizer can help your hydrangeas grow well. Feed them with it every two weeks during their early growth up to the peak of their flower production for the best results.

2. Practice frequent irrigation.


For mature hydrangea, it is best to keep them hydrated regularly. Therefore, always keep them moist until autumn with an inch of water per week. Irrigate less during the plant’s dormancy and only when the soil is dry.

3. Prune Cautiously.


Pruning hydrangeas will depend on what variety you sow. Mopheads don’t need to get pruned because they produce blossoms on the old stems. Therefore, preserving these stems are essential for the following year’s blooming activity.

Climbing hydrangeas don’t necessarily need pruning, unless you want to redirect their stem’s growth.

As for the Paniculata variety, pruning them during springtime will help them grow into the ideal shape.

Best Hydrangea Varieties to Plant in Tennessee


Alice is an oakleaf hydrangea that grows well in USDA zones 5-9, which is great for planting in Tennessee. This type grows up to 8 feet in height and naturally attracts passersby because of their white-colored petals that turn into pink.

One of the best hydrangeas for full sun is the Avant-Garde variety. They also thrive well in Tennessee’s zones, and although they only grow up to 4 feet, they make the best ornamentals for fence structures.

The Annabelle variety is a fast-growing cultivar that thrives best in zones 6-9, which matches Tennese’s zones. They develop well in partial shade, which makes them useful for places with temperate climates.

Tips for Successful Hydrangeas Planting in Tennessee


1 . Plant in well-draining soil and under bright light.

The best places to plant hydrangeas are somewhere with well-draining soil and full sun in the morning. Applying organic matter to the ground that is not loamy helps fix its drainage.

Also, planting them where they can get sufficient morning sunlight and afternoon shade is necessary for healthy growth. The east side of the home is often an excellent choice.

2. Apply a deliberate amount of water.

Once-a-day irrigation is sufficient for young plants. However, if it’s too hot in the area, watering them twice will be helpful to keep the flowers hydrated.


Hydrangeas are amazing plants that effortlessly help you have an attractive yard with their wonderful colors, structures, and uses. But behind hydrangeas’ successful growth is the proper planting time and the optimal care they need.

Grow them in the spring or autumn when there are no freezing periods for proper flowering. To promote healthy development, feed them with the ideal fertilizers, keep them moist, and prune them according to what variety you sow.

Now that you know when to plant hydrangeas in Tennessee, you only need to wait until fall or spring comes to successfully plant them!

Other plants you can grow in Tennessee, click to know the best time for growing:

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