Hydrangeas For Zone 8: Tips On Choosing The Best Zone 8 Hydrangeas

There are plenty of zone 8 hydrangeas that are well-suited to Southern gardens. Here are some of the most beautiful varieties to try.

Lacecap hydrangea shrub under a tree
(Image credit: satoru nakao / Getty Images)

Hydrangeas are popular flowering shrubs with big summer blossoms. Some types of hydrangeas are very cold hardy, but what about zone 8 hydrangeas? Can you grow hydrangeas in zone 8? Yes! In fact, finding the best hydrangea by zone is easy with a little bit of guidance. That's why we've compiled all the zone 8 hydrangea varieties your can grow in your warm climate garden.

Can You Grow Hydrangeas in Zone 8?

Those who live in USDA plant hardiness zone 8 may wonder about growing hydrangeas for zone 8. The answer is an unconditional yes. Each type of hydrangea shrub thrives in a range of hardiness zones. Most of those ranges include zone 8. However, some zone 8 hydrangea varieties are more likely to be trouble-free than others, so those are the best zone 8 hydrangeas for planting in this region.

Zone 8 Hydrangea Varieties

You’ll find many hydrangeas for zone 8. These include the most popular hydrangeas of all, bigleaf hydrangeas (Hydrangea macrophylla). Bigleafs come in two kinds, the famous mopheads with huge “snowball” blossoms, and lacecap with flat-topped flower clusters. Bigleafs are famous for their color changing act.

The shrubs produce pink flowers when planted in soil that has a high pH. The same shrubs grow blue flowers in acidic (low pH) soil. Bigleafs thrive in USDA zones 5 through 9, which means they will likely cause you no problems as hydrangeas in zone 8.

Both smooth hydrangea (Hydrangea arborescens) and oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia) are native to this country. These varieties thrive in USDA zones 3 through 9 and 5 through 9, respectively.

Smooth hydrangeas grow up to 10 feet (3 m.) tall and wide in the wild but will likely stay at 4 feet (1 m.) in each direction in your garden. These zone 8 hydrangeas have dense, large coarse leaves and many flowers. 'Annabelle' is a popular cultivar.

Oakleaf hydrangeas have leaves that are lobed like oak leaves. The flowers grow in light green, turn cream colored, then mature to deep rose by midsummer. Plant these pest-free natives in cool, shaded locations. Try dwarf cultivar 'Pee-Wee' for a smaller shrub. You have even more choices in varieties of hydrangeas for zone 8.

Serrated hydrangea (Hydrangea serrata) is a smaller version of bigleaf hydrangea. It grows to about 5 feet (1.5 m.) high and thrives in zones 6 through 9.

Climbing hydrangea (Hydrangea anomala petiolari) takes the form of a vine rather than a bush. However, zone 8 is at the very top of its hardiness range, so it may not be as vigorous as a zone 8 hydrangea.

Teo Spengler

Teo Spengler has been gardening for 30 years. She is a docent at the San Francisco Botanical Garden. Her passion is trees, 250 of which she has planted on her land in France.