Companion plants for oakleaf hydrangea will have a symbiotic relationship with the hydrangea. These plants offer an array of benefits.

Plants That Repel Bees

It helps your plant grow healthier and blossom beautifully. These flowers are going to add a significant vibrancy to your garden that will make it look aesthetically pleasing.

Below are some good plants you can grow with your smooth hydrangea.

Types of Companion Plants for Oakleaf Hydrangea

1. Gardenia

The Gardenia plant is known as the Gardenia jaminoides, as this is its scientific term. It is a flowering plant from the Rubiaceae, making it a member of the coffee family. They grow in cool, moist, and acidic soil, which meets the growing requirements for hydrangeas.

White Gardenia Flowers Blooms

– Benefits

Gardenia is a good companion plant for the hydrangea ‘limelight. Nonetheless, these flowers can tolerate the shade cast by the taller hydrangea while helping to improve air circulation around the plant. The gardenia attracts beneficial pollinators to the garden. Its dark green shade complements the bright colors of the hydrangeas in the garden.

– Growth Requirements

Dig a hole twice as broad and slightly deeper as the root ball, and then fill the hole with a couple of inches of new dirt. Insert the gardenia into the hole until the top of the root ball is even with the soil surface. Fill up the space surrounding the root ball with earth. Water thoroughly.

Next, spray the hydrangea seeds on the soil’s surface, spacing them four inches apart. But you must remember that you should not cover the seeds with soil, instead you can try to plant them without burying them deeply in the soil.

2. Boxwood

The boxwood plant, scientifically known as the Buxus sempervirens, is a perfectly contrasting plant when combined with the hydrangea. They also grow under very similar conditions and, thus, thrive very well together. 

Boxwood in Garden

Overall, the boxwood has similar moisture and soil requirements as the hydrangea. They both prefer organic soil with good mulch and controlled exposure to heat.

– Benefits

The boxwood plant, especially the American boxwood, makes great companion plants for hydrangeas. The reason is that this plant will stay beautiful all year round, and it will even add structure to free-form beds. They are great partners, especially in a summer garden when you clip them in a symmetrical or box shape.

– Growth Requirements

Plant hydrangea seeds in a raised bed. Ensure that the soil used is loamy. The pH of the earth largely determines the color of the hydrangea quercifolia. Hydrangea thrives in acidic soil and in the presence of moisture, which is the same for boxwood.

Once you have planted your hydrangea, you can plant the beautiful tree, which makes it quite simple, as you can do this in two ways. Furthermore, you can decide to bury the boxwood behind your hydrangea as well, in order to add some contrast that will be produced by the lush, outstanding flowers behind a green background overlay.

Avoid underplanting hydrangea limelight when you cross it with boxwood. You can plant the boxwood right in front of your hydrangea beds. Allow your boxwood to grow taller when planted behind to create a contrasting background in your garden.

3. Azaleas

The Azalea or the Rhododendron, is a flowering plant with a distinct red tint. This tint can also be yellow, white, or salmon-colored.

Purple Azaleas Flowers

The azalea plant is a natural companion of the hydrangea arborescens . They occur and thrive together. They also share similar growth requirements, making them great together.

While hydrangeas bloom all season, some azalea varieties have their peak blooming period at the beginning of summer. For the best look in your flower garden, pick varieties of azaleas that blossom all season, especially if you decide to go with planting hydrangea surrounding it.

– Benefits

When it comes to the appearance of your flower garden, matching hydrangea with azaleas creates a colorful statement. The azaleas’ petal colors range from feminine pink to bold yellow and lush red, which complement the blue, white, and pink hues of the hydrangea, as they would even cut out compete the majority of common weeds.

– Growth Requirements

When planting azaleas and hydrangeas together, the soil pH level is a critical factor to consider. Both plants have the exact same growth requirements and procedures, and this would make things easier for you.

However, you must plant more than one type of hydrangea alongside the azaleas, to elaborate further, when you are planting pink hydrangea, remember that they thrives in acidic soil. A slight change in the soil pH level towards alkalinity will cause the pink petals to turn blue.

4. Swedish Ivy

Swedish ivy or the Plectranthus is the Lamiaceae family’s aromatic, glossy green plant. The same family as the American beautyberry.

Green Leaves of Swedish Ivy

It thrives well in loamy, moist soil with acidic pH levels. The stem can grow up to 11 inches and be as wide as 23 inches. It has rounded leaves of about three inches only and a deep purple tint at the center, giving it a unique flare. Its small, lush leaves grow in the surrounding areas between hydrangea plants.

– Benefits

The Swedish ivy outcompetes weeds because the shade prevents them from receiving sunlight. Taking this into consideration the contrast works perfectly for the aesthetic look of your flower garden. On another note, it is also characterized by its scent, which attracts pollinating insects, which benefits the hydrangea.

– Growth Requirements

Prepare a raised bed and place the seeds on top of it. Take care not to bury the seeds in the soil. It is best to plant hydrangeas in a location that receives four to six hours of sunlight daily.

They should be exposed to sunlight early in the morning and placed in moist, acidic soil. The seeds will germinate in about 14 days. You can then place stems of Swedish ivy in proper spacing arrangements between the hydrangeas.

The Swedish ivy plant blooms to give white flowers on an almost eight-inch stalk. The flowers are smaller compared to the French hydrangea. The perfect mix of green, pink, white, and purple hints make the perfect combination in your flower garden.

5. Sweet Potato

The sweet potato vine is a twining plant with heart-shaped leaves and funnel-shaped flowers. It is one of the best perennials to plant with hydrangeas . The sweet potato vines are whitish, making them great for companion planting with the hydrangea limelight.

Growing Sweet Potato

Since they belong to the morning glory family, their flowers feature a pinkish tint at the thinner part of the funneled flowers. It is a climbing vine primarily cultivated for its tuberous roots, which are commonly eaten in different parts of the world, hence this is a key property that they have.

– Benefits

These sprawling plants create the perfect cover between the hydrangea spaces. They come in various colors, like brown, bronze, and purple, complementing the hydrangea’s outstanding petals.

– Growth Requirements

Select a healthy potato and submerge it in water.  Balance the chosen potato in a glass of water where you can see the changes that are occurring. Place the pointy side up and balance to stand upright. In three to four weeks, the potatoes will begin to produce sprouts.

Make sure you change the water every three days and place it in fresh water. Cut shoots from the potato roots and transplant them into a well-dug hole. Spread hydrangea seeds on the soil’s surface, spaced four inches from one another, and lastly remember that you shouldn’t cover the seeds with soil.

6. Plantain Lillies

The plantain lilies are commonly known as Hostas, and they are shade-tolerant herbaceous plants cultivated mainly for their foliage. They grow in cool, moist, and acidic soil, which meets the growing requirements for panicled hydrangeas. The plantain lilies can tolerate the shade cast by the taller hydrangea while helping to improve air circulation around the plant.

Lush Plantain Lillies

– Benefits

When considering blooming seasons, the hostas peak during the hydrangea planting period. They come in various colors like white, green, and blue-green, complementing the hydrangea’s outstanding petals, adding uniqueness with the range of colors in your garden.

– Growth Requirements

If you are wondering how to plant hostas and hydrangeas together, then to simplify it, you should first note that the hydrangea plant can spread way more than five feet, with hostas having an average spread of five feet.

Therefore, the distance between plants becomes necessary to enable them to extend well for the best growth. Select three to five hostas per oakleaf hydrangea to complement its colors and give it an appealing hue, and simply plant the selected hostas in a ring around the hydrangea.

7. Japanese Pittosporum

The Japanese pittosporum is a sweet-smelling flowering plant native to Japan, where you can also find the Japanese maple and the Japanese forest grass. It is a widely used decorative and ornamental plant. Just like other ornamental grasses, they thrive well with hydrangea macrophylla because forest grass can always be a pleasing option.

Fruits on Japanese Pittosporum

Pittosporum is also widely cultivated as foliage. This flowering plant is low-growing, with whorled leaves and tiny white flowers. The Japanese pittosporum is a shrub that can grow to resemble a tree.

– Benefits

The orange tint from the Japanese pittosporum complements the hydrangea flowers, especially the white and pink ones. They can be grouped across borders and used for hedging.

– Planting Tips

You can plant pittosporum by transplanting the cuttings. The plant does yield seeds, which are red. However, these seeds could be more viable. They require excellent drainage, in addition, this plant is frost-tender and has seeds to withstand the winter cold. 

Plant your hydrangea seeds by placing them on the surface of moist, loamy soil with acidic properties. Wait till it sprouts with sunlight exposure of five to six hours. Place pittosporum cuttings between hydrangeas, with about three shrubs to one hydrangea plant.


The perfect flower garden depends on how well you combine flowers. The hydrangea thrives on moist, loamy soil. Plants like lavender that prefer drier soil are a terrible match for it. When selecting comparison plants for the hydrangea, there are several essential things to note:

  • The acidity/alkalinity of the soil affects petal colors. Hydrangea can thrive in both conditions. However, alkaline soil will yield blue flowers compared to pink petals from acidic soil.
  • All these plants grow under the same condition as the hydrangea plant. They require moist, mulch-rich organic soil.
  • The best bobo hydrangea companion plants shade or color is usually darker to give the perfect contrast.

You can improve the appearance of your flower garden by using any of these common flowering plants as companion plant for endless summer hydrangeas.


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