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Drying Hydrangeas the Easy Way

Looking for ways to preserve hydrangeas? Drying hydrangeas couldn’t be easier to do and there’s a crazy simple way to do it. Unlock the secret for perfectly dried hydrangeas with these expert tips.

With a few methods of drying hydrangeas out there, there is one method that I use All. The. Time.


Because it’s the easiest.

And I’m sharing it with you today.

Wait until you see how simple it is to dry hydrangea flowers!

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Why You Should Preserve Hydrangea Flowers

Drying hydrangeas to preserve their blooms is a wonderful way to extend the beauty of these stunning flowers long after their peak season.

Hydrangeas are known for their large, lush blossoms and vibrant colors, making them a popular choice for both indoor and outdoor flower arrangements.

By drying hydrangeas, you can capture their natural charm and use them in various decorative projects.

These preserved blooms are perfect for crafting wreaths, creating elegant centerpieces, or simply adorning your living space with a touch of timeless beauty.

Drying hydrangeas not only allows you to enjoy their splendor year-round but also adds a touch of nostalgia and natural elegance to your home decor.

limelight hydrangeas

10 Easy Ways to Use Dried Hydrangeas

Dried hydrangeas are incredibly versatile and can be used in a variety of creative and decorative ways.

Here are some inspiring ideas to make the most of your dried hydrangea flowers.

  • Dried Hydrangea Arrangements: Create stunning and long-lasting floral arrangements by combining dried hydrangeas with other dried flowers, grasses, or seed pods. Place a dried hydrangea bouquet in vases, baskets, or rustic containers for an elegant and timeless look.
  • Wreaths: Craft your own wreaths using dried hydrangeas as the focal point. Whether it’s a seasonal wreath for your front door or an indoor wreath for your wall, dried hydrangeas add a touch of natural beauty and texture.
  • Table Centerpieces: Use dried hydrangea flowers to design captivating centerpieces for special occasions or everyday dining.
  • Home Decor: Incorporate dried hydrangeas into your home decor by placing them in decorative bowls, on mantels, or as accents in bookshelves.
  • Bouquets and Corsages: Create your own everlasting bouquets or corsages with dried hydrangeas.
  • Dried Flower Art: Press dried hydrangeas between the pages of a heavy book to flatten them, and then use them for various art projects.
  • Potpourri: Mix dried hydrangea petals with other dried flowers, herbs, and spices to create homemade potpourri.
  • Dried Flower Jewelry: Embed dried hydrangea petals into resin to make unique and personalized jewelry pieces like pendants or earrings.
  • Wedding Decor: Dried hydrangeas are an excellent choice for rustic and bohemian wedding decor.
  • Gift Wrapping: Add a touch of nature and sophistication to your gift wrapping by tucking a few dried hydrangea blooms into bows or using them as decorative accents on the gift itself.

Whether you’re preserving cherished memories, elevating your home decor, or creating unique gifts, dried hydrangeas offer a touch of natural beauty and elegance that can be enjoyed throughout the year.

Their versatility and long-lasting appeal make them a favorite choice for cozy home decor and various creative projects.

So it’s totally worth learning how to preserve hydrangeas to level up your home’s aesthetic.

Rustic farmhouse kitchen with DIY hydrangea wreath in farmhouse kitchen with painted cabinets -rustic farmhouse kitchen fall home tour 2021
My former farmhouse kitchen

How to Dry a Hydrangea the Easy Way

Hydrangeas are the queens of the flower world, with their vibrant colors and lush petals. But what happens when your beautiful hydrangea blooms start to fade? Don’t fret!

Drying hydrangeas is a fantastic way to preserve their beauty and enjoy them for months to come.

And guess what?

It’s easier to do than you might think!

Learning how to dry a hydrangea is a great way to preserve your garden during the fall and winter months while adding beautiful decor to your home.

Here is the EASIEST way to do it!

Close up of hydrangea flowers when it starts to fade -How to Make a Simple Hydrangea Wreath for Free
Hydrangea Limelight Flowers

Supplies Needed


  • Allow the blooms to dry naturally on the plants (typically in August through October). They are ready when the petals look a little more vintage than bright and the flowers might feel a little papery.
  • Find some pretty blooms that meet this criteria and cut about 12-18″ long if you can.
  • Cut them at varying heights. It helps with the drying process when grouped together.
  • Remove all the leaves from the stems.
  • Grab a few glass jars or vases. I love to use mason jars for drying hydrangeas.
  • Fill each jar with about 2-3″ of water.
  • To dry hydrangeas well, don’t overcrowd the blooms in the jars so they get enough air circulation.

As the water evaporates, the hydrangea blooms will start naturally drying. And that’s it!

Drying hydrangea flowers could not be any easier. And once dry, they can last a really long time.

Dried hydrangeas look great in home decor, wreaths, bouquets, and other craft projects.

For best results, keep them out of direct light and humidity. Once dry, they will make great hydrangea centerpieces in my fall decor. I love using them in a vintage toolbox that I found thrifting in Vermont.

How to Dry a Hydrangea the Easy Way
How to Dry a Hydrangea the Easy Way

Drying Hydrangea Flowers FAQs

As with any creative endeavor, you might have a few questions along the way. In this section, I’m sharing the most commonly asked questions about drying hydrangeas, providing you with expert answers and helpful tips to ensure your dried blooms turn out fabulous.

When should hydrangeas be dried?

Hydrangeas should be dried when they are at their peak and have reached the ideal stage for harvesting. Timing is crucial to ensure that the dried hydrangeas retain their color, shape, and beauty.

Here are some tips on when to dry hydrangeas:

Late Summer to Early Autumn: The best time to start drying hydrangeas is during late summer or early autumn. At this time, hydrangea blooms are typically at their most vibrant and have developed their full color. The petals should feel slightly papery to the touch, indicating that they are mature enough for drying.

Avoid Rainy Days: When planning to dry hydrangeas, it’s essential to avoid doing so during rainy or humid weather. Excess moisture in the air can interfere with the drying process and may lead to mold or wilting of the blooms. Opt for a period when the weather is relatively dry and humidity levels are lower.

close up of endless summer hydrangea macrophylla flowers as they fade in late summer - garden nj in the backyard in late summer with garden shed, raised garden beds and arbor

Before the First Frost: If you live in an area with colder climates and frost is common, it’s best to harvest and dry your hydrangeas before the first frost sets in. Frost can damage the blooms, making them unsuitable for drying.

Mid-Morning Harvest: When harvesting hydrangeas for drying, aim to do so in the mid-morning. At this time, the plant has had a chance to recover from the cooler night temperatures, and the blooms are well-hydrated. This helps ensure that the hydrangeas have enough moisture content before the drying process begins.

Stem Evaluation: When selecting blooms for drying, examine the stems closely. Choose stems that are healthy, strong, and free from any signs of diseases or pests. Avoid using blooms with browning or damaged petals, as they may not dry well.

Whether you plan to use them for home decor, crafts, or special occasions, properly dried hydrangeas will add a touch of natural beauty and elegance to any setting.

panicle hyrdrangea

How to Dry a Hydrangea the Easy Way

Looking for ways to dry your hydrangea blooms? Learn how to dry a hydrangea the way with these simple tips.
Prep Time10 minutes
Active Time10 minutes
Total Time20 minutes
Cost: $15




  • Allow the blooms to dry naturally on the plants (typically in August through October). They are ready when the petals look a little more vintage than bright and the flowers might feel a little papery.
    Close up of hydrangea flowers when it starts to fade -How to Make a Simple Hydrangea Wreath for Free
  • Find some pretty blooms that meet this criteria and cut about 12-18″ long if you can
  • Cut them at varying heights. It helps with the drying process when grouped together.
    How to Dry a Hydrangea the Easy Way
  • Remove all the leaves from the stems.
    removing the leaves from a hydrangea stem
  • Grab a few glass jars or vases.
  • Fill each jar with about 2-3″ of water
  • To dry hydrangeas well, don’t overcrowd the blooms in the jars so they get enough air circulation.
    Cut hydrangeas for drying in farmhouse kitchen in vintage ball jar glasses -How to Dry a Hydrangea the Easy Way
  • Allow the water to evaporate and don't refill.

How do you dry hydrangeas without wilting them?

Drying hydrangeas without wilting them involves using a gentle and gradual drying method that allows the flowers to retain their shape and color. The air-drying method is a great way to achieve this.

This involves drying hydrangeas upside down. Here’s a step-by-step guide to drying hydrangeas without wilting:

Materials Needed

  • Freshly cut hydrangea stems
  • Pruners
  • Rubber bands or string
  • A dry and well-ventilated location
  • Optional: a container or vase
Cut hydrangea branches in basket -How to Keep Fresh Cut Hydrangeas from Drooping
Fall Harvest Dining Table Centerpiece and Autumn Table Decorations

Step-by-Step Guide

  • Choose the Right Time: Harvest hydrangea blooms when they are at their peak, just before they reach full maturity. The blooms should have developed their color and feel slightly papery to the touch.
  • Prepare the Stems: Using sharp pruning shears, cut the hydrangea stems at an angle. Cut the stems to your desired length, but keep in mind that longer stems may take longer to dry.
  • Remove Excess Foliage: Strip off any excess leaves from the stems. By doing so, you allow more airflow around the flowers, which aids in the drying process.
  • Group the Stems: Gather a small bunch of hydrangea stems (around 3 to 5 stems) and secure them together at the cut end using a rubber band or string. Make sure not to tie them too tightly to avoid crushing the stems.
  • Find the Perfect Spot: Choose a dry, dark, and well-ventilated location for drying the hydrangeas. An ideal spot could be a closet, attic, or a dry basement.
  • Hang Upside Down: Hang the bundled hydrangea stems upside down from a hook or a hanger. The inverted position helps the flowers retain their shape and prevents wilting. You can also use a drying rack or a clothesline to hang them.
  • Wait Patiently: Now comes the waiting game! Let the hydrangeas air dry for about two to three weeks. During this time, the flowers will lose their moisture and gradually dry while maintaining their color and shape.
  • Check for Dryness: After the drying period, gently touch the petals to ensure they feel papery and slightly brittle. If they are not completely dry, give them a little more time.
  • Styling: Once the hydrangeas are completely dry, you can display them in a vase or use them in your preferred dried flower arrangements.

By air-drying your hydrangeas, you allow them to dry naturally, which minimizes the risk of wilting and helps preserve their beauty. Patience is key in this process, but the end result is well worth it!

DIY Simple Hydrangea Wreath using what you have on hand and cutting flowers from the garden

More About Drying Hydrangeas

Have you dried hydrangeas before? What method did you use? Do you have any tips you’d like to share? I would love to know more in the comments below.

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The Basics of Hydrangea Care

More About Hydrangeas

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Garden Supplies I Use

I’m often asked about the garden supplies and tools that I use most. From pruners to deer repellents, here are some of my favorites in no particular order.

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How to Dry Hydrangeas the Easy Way
How to Dry a Hydrangea the Easy Way
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    1. You are welcome! I love how you decorated with those hydrangea blooms! I’m on the hunt for new vessels today at some antique stores! Woohoo!

  1. Hi Stacy, I have only one hydrangea plant,and it is in a pot, Ian afraid to put it in the ground because of the gofers, do you think it would be safe to put it in the ground and if so, when would be the best time to separate them and transplant them?
    I live on the central coast of CA.. in Salinas, in Monterey County. I am not sure of the zone.
    Thank you
    Wanda henson

    1. Hi Wanda! Have gophers damaged your hydrangeas before? I have a resident groundog who eats my other plants but leaves my hydrangeas alone.

  2. Stacy – you have no idea how timely this is! We’ve been renovating our gardens and just planted many hydrangeas. I love hydrangeas and I’m looking forward to extending the joy by drying them so they can be used year round. I appreciate all the reference links too … I’ll be heading down this rabbit hole and will soon be a hydrangea mama extraordinaire! xo

    1. Hydrangeas are so much fun! Last year my area had a huge problem with lack of blooms so that prompted the hydrangea series. I love drying them too! I just found a cool vintage crate this weekend for these as soon as they are dry! xoxo

  3. I love fresh and dry hydrangeas. I always let them dry on the plant, but never thought to bring a bunch inside. Such a great idea!

  4. Pingback: 3 Plant Styling Tips to Transition from Winter to Spring Decor - Stacy Ling