Q: I have noticed pink oakleaf hydrangeas around town. Is this a new variety?
A: You are simply seeing the fading hydrangea flowers, which gradually change from white to pink to brown. When we have lots of rain, the high humidity prolongs the life of the flowers so the pink color is more noticed. Oakleaf hydrangea is truly a plant with four-season interest. It has bright green leaves in spring, white flowers in early summer, intense maroon foliage in fall and interesting peeling bark in winter. It is one of the best native shrubs. I recommend ‘Snowflake’, which has double-petaled flowers, and ‘Pee Wee’, which only grows three feet high and three feet wide.