- Wreath Form—Wire or Grapevine (I prefer wire)
- Spool of Floral Wire
- Wire Cutters
- Fresh Hydrangea Blooms (see notes below on selecting)
Select your hydrangea blooms
The secret to perfect blooms for your hydrangea wreath is very simple: Wait until they are ready before picking them. While it is tempting to cut the hydrangea blossoms for drying at the height of their color, this doesn’t work. Fresh, recently opened blooms, rarely dry well in open air. If you use fresh hydrangea blooms they will shrivel within a few days and create open areas in your wreath form.
Hydrangeas do best when allowed to dry on the plant before picking them. You want to pick the blooms when they are on their way out. Leave the blooms on the plant until late summer. Toward the end of the summer the petals will begin to age and take on a vintage look. Blooms will feel more papery or dry to the touch versus the “wet” feel of fresh blooms. It is the older blooms with the paper touch that you want to cut. If left on the shrub a while longer, many blooms will pick up interesting shades of burgundy and pink. Normally the best harvesting time in Iowa is from August through October.
Any type of hydrangea blooms will work, some of the more common ones I haved used are Annabelle, Endless Summer, and Limelight. I prefer to make wreaths with round or mop headed hydrangea blooms because they are fuller and cover the wire wreath forms easier.
Cutting the Hydrangea Blooms
Cut your flowers when you are ready to begin making the wreath form. . You may want to cut blooms that are similar in size. This will help your wreath look consistent in size all the way around. When you cut your hydrangea blooms cut them with a stem of at least 4 inches so that you have enough stem to wire the flower to your wreath form. Once you have cut your hydrangea blooms strip all leaves off the stem and trim any brown blooms off the flower head.
Creating the Wreath
- Take a small piece of wire to wrap into the back of the wire base at the top so that you can hang the wreath on the wall or door.
- Wrap the free end of the floral wire around the edge of the wire wreath form and secure it to the wreath form.
- Place a hydrangea stem with bloom on wreath form. Using the spool of floral wire wrap the wire around stem to secure it, pulling wire taut.
- Place another flower bloom on the wreath, with the flower head covering the stem of the prior bloom and wire this one on.
- Continue adding flowers and wrapping stems around the wreath until wreath is completely full. Cut the wire and attach the end of the wire to the wreath form.
- Now look at the overall appearance and shape of your wreath—Balance is what you are looking for in shape, you don’t want any blooms sticking out way above the others, you don’t want one side of the wreath to be fuller than the other. Try stepping back and looking at a distance. Give the blooms a little “haircut” with the scissors if they need it in order to balance out the shape.
- Hang your wreath up. Your blooms will usually dry within one day to one week, depending on temperature and humidity levels. Once they are dry you have a wreath that you can enjoy!
Expect your wreath to look good for about one year or much less if they are in direct sunlight. When your wreath doesn’t look pretty anymore strip off the old flowers and use the old wire base to make a new one!