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How Deep Are Hydrangea Roots? (Quick Answers)

Hydrangea is commonly known as hydrangea or hortensia. It is a genus that contains over 75 species of flower plants that are native in Asia and the Americas. Hydrangeas can be either deciduous or evergreen, although the most cultivated species worldwide are all deciduous.

 The roots of hydrangea are commonly spread through the plant’s drip line and slightly beyond the line.

We will be discussing how deep the hydrangea roots are and how much space and vicinity they need, along with different types of Hydrangeas and their root system. 

How deep are hydrangea roots?

Hydrangea roots need about 3 to 10 feet between each plant. Most kind of hydrangea roots remains about 6 inches on the top layer of soil. The main roots are made of rhizomes. So, these roots elongate to sprouts at bud points. These roots give nutrient-rich, friable soil for fibrous root growths.

The main root of a hydrangea plant is made of rhizomes. They are also known as underground stems. These roots elongate inside the ground into sprouts at the bud points. These sprouts breakthrough and come out of the soil and form new hydrangea stems and flowers.

As the hydrangea grows more prominent, your rhizomes start to clump. You can dig out this clump and divide it to grow more plants.  If these clumps are planted separately, they will grow into two other hydrangea plants. 

Hydrangea plants commonly need to be placed every 3 to 10 feet of vicinity for growth.

They also depend on their species and variety. They usually tend to grow to the drip line and a bit beyond. These roots go about 6 inches down the upper soil and the rhizome roots push through nutrients filled in the soil to give smaller, fibrous roots. 

Hydrangea paniculata:

The Hydrangea paniculata is the scientific name Panicled hydrangea. They are also known as pee gee, hardy, and Limelight hydrangeas. They are one of the easiest kinds of hydrangea to grow and the most acceptable one.

They are considered the easiest to grow, tolerant, and not picky with a particular soil. But, a good drainage system is essential. They have a pretty shallow root system. Their roots are also not that deep and stay on the upper layer of the soil. 

Vanilla strawberry hydrangea:

Vanilla strawberry roots are not invasive and do not grow more than 6 inches deep. Like most other hydrangeas, Vanilla strawberry hydrangea has a shallow root system that prevents them from easily drying out.

Going around from the mid-summer, the bud points of the hydrangeas open up into closely packed clusters of white flowers with pinkish in the middle. As they grow old, they have a rich strawberry-red color. 

Endless summer hydrangea:

Endless summer hydrangea is one of the best bloomers out there. You can get them to rebloom and get longer blooming seasons. These flowers are known to be the flowers that change color from place to place, but the secret trick is in its soil’s pH.

You can adjust its color by changing the soil pH to vivid blue, pale lavender, soft mauve, or deep pink mophead blooms. They have a shallow root system and go out 6 inches in the soil. 

Peegee hydrangea:

A pee gee hydrangea is a white-colored hydrangea. They are also known as the Hydrangea paniculata . They grow about 15 feet from the ground.

With damp but not soggy soil of approximate inches to the top, their roots grow and have a non-invasive shallow root system.

Oakleaf Hydrangea:

Oakleaf hydrangea is a white or blush shrub that grows for about four seasons. They can be seen in two forms, the single blossom types, and the so-called double-blossom type.

They are great for dryer areas, and they also don’t need much attention. They also have shallow root systems that grow in dryer regions with upper layer roots. 

Do hydrangeas have a deep root system?

Hydrangea tends to have a shallow root system. Hydrangea roots do not go that deep. They tend to stay on the upper layer of the soil of about 6 inches. That’s why they can easily be covered with a layer of mulch.

They will be good if the plants are kept 3 to 5 feet apart as they tend to grow really large and a bit beyond their drip line. 

Climbing hydrangea:

Hydrangea petiolar is also known as the climbing hydrangea, is a species of the flowering plant in the family called Hydrangeaceae, one of the commons in the woodlands of Japan.

They take about 5-6 years to grow and grow about 60 to 70 feet tall and have one root system below and one above the ground. Thus their roots grow about 3 to 10 feet after they are fully grown. 

Hydrangea bush:

Hydrangea bushes should be placed in a place where they get a lot of the morning sun and shadier afternoons. They don’t like the afternoon sun. With some balanced fertilizers, they will grow nicely in mulch, as they have shallow root systems. 

How far wide do hydrangea roots spread?

Hydrangea roots spread about 3 feet to 10 feet from one plant to another. They also largely depend on their variety. Their rhizome roots are distributed through the plant drip line and slightly beyond the line.

 This gap provides them to get enough access to the food and nutrition they require. A container kept hydrangea should be loosened up at its roots to get even spread. This will ensure enough growth the roots need in from the soil.

The rhizome roots spread through easily nutrients and rich soil to allow more space for the smaller roots to have fibrous root growths.

Will hydrangea roots damage the foundation and pipes?

Hydrangea roots might damage the foundation and pipes if there is a leak in the pipe. They don’t know the difference between a rock or a pipe, so they will bend against it and form roots through it but won’t harm the pipe unless it has a leak.

 It is not possible with an irrigation pipe but can be possible for the sewerage drain pipe. They do not have strong or invasive roots rather shallow root systems, so they are not likely to infiltrate with the walls or foundations.

Are hydrangea roots invasive? How invasive are hydrangea roots?

No, hydrangea roots are not invasive, at least in most cases. Hydrangeas are known as the caning shrubs meaning that they develop new growth or stem directly from the root buds. These can, over time, significantly increase the size of the shrub.

This means they can spread in a large area but, they are not invasive. They can get inside of leaks or holes but are not intrusive. Moreover, they will bend through any object, swelling their won nodes.

How to remove hydrangea roots?

Transplanting or removing hydrangea roots can be tricky. They have shallow roots with trees almost growing tall as 15 feet. Once a hydrangea tree is fully developed, they have to build up a complicated root system below the ground.

Sometimes they have two root systems as well, one above the ground and another one above. We will be mentioning some steps that would help you take out to replace the roots safely and perfectly below:

  •  The best time to remove the roots is during the fall, when the trees don’t have any leaves and have gone dormant. 
  • The most ideal condition is a few weeks prior to cold temperatures above freezing and overcast days.
  • To reduce any sources of plant shock, try using root pruning before you decide to replace the roots completely.
  • The best option would be using a spading shovel to dig a hole along the leaf line of the plant at about a 45-degree angle. 
  • Making only single cuts with as little damage to the roots, try replacing and water them regularly so the roots have time to recover. 

These are some of the ways you could remove a hydrangea plant with minimum damage to the roots. 

Final Thoughts

Hydrangea roots go about 6 inches under the soil and need about 3-5 feet of space to get all the nutrients and moisture to grow to their full potential. Some hydrangeas also have stems or roots above the ground and grow about 15 feet. Hydrangeas mostly have a non-invasive shallow root system.