The Hydrangea macrophylla Venice, or big-leaf hydrangea Venice, is a cultivated dwarf variety of hydrangea that blooms on old wood. This flowering deciduous shrub blooms during summer with vibrant deep-pink to rose-colored flowers borne in large clusters. Reaching a height of only 1 to 3 feet and spread of 3 to 4 feet, the Venice variety grows best in USDA Hardiness Zones 5 through 9, where winter temperatures rarely dip down to -15 degrees Fahrenheit.
Plant your Venice hydrangeas in well-drained soil and in full to partial sunlight. Mix into the soil some peat moss, leaf mold (humus) or well-rotted compost before planting the Venice hydrangea.
Water your Hydrangea macrophylla Venice deeply to soak the soil around the roots once per week throughout the spring, summer and early autumn. If you receive at least 1 inch of rainfall in a week, you don't need to water the hydrangeas.
Spread a 3- to 5-inch-thick layer of organic mulch on the ground around your hydrangeas to control weeds and retain soil moisture.
Feed your Hydrangea macrophylla Venice once each year in early spring with a slow-release, balanced fertilizer made for trees and shrubs. Follow the dosage instructions on the label and feed the hydrangeas again in mid-summer to provide added nutrients.
Prune your Hydrangea macrophylla Venice right after the flowers fade, removing the spent flower heads. Prune back the non-flowering shoots to encourage a bushier form. Remove all the weaker shoots at the base of the plant, keeping the productive, blossoming stems intact.