Hydrangeas and Hostas

Why Plant Hydrangeas and Hostas Together?

Are you looking for ideas on what to plant with hydrangeas? In my 20 years of growing hydrangeas in my garden, I can say with confidence that hydrangeas and hostas have become two of my favorite plants to grow together. 

Both of these two plants complement each other in so many ways. 

Why Plant Hydrangeas in My Garden

I love hydrangeas. They are one of my favorite plants in my garden. I find Hydrangeas to be some of the most rewarding plants to grow. 

Hydrangeas are so easy to grow and you don’t even have to water them much once established and they come back year after year. It’s the perfect flowering shrub for lazy gardeners like me. 


I love the wow effect from the beautiful clusters of flowers. And depending on the soil pH, they can bloom in different colors – from blue to pink to white, and even purple.

One thing I love about hydrangeas is that they are so versatile. You can plant them in a mix of sun and shade. While they can take some direct sunlight, they prefer a bit of afternoon shade. 

This makes hydrangeas pretty flexible when it comes to finding the right spot in the garden. That’s why I have hydrangeas all over my garden!

Botanical nameHydrangea spp.
Sun or shadePartial shade to full sun
Watering requirementModerate to high
Soil requirementWell-drained, moist soil
ZoneVaries depending on the species (generally zones 3-9)
Hydrangeas Plant Facts

Why Plant Hostas in My Garden

Hostas, on the other hand, are all about their lush foliage. They’ve been my go-to for adding some greenery to shadier parts of the garden. 

While they do have flowers, it’s their leaves that really stand out. The Hosta leaves can vary in color, from deep greens to softer hues mixed with white and yellow.

Hostas are great for lazy gardeners. They are hardy and low-maintenance. 

Hostas are great for adding a pop of color under trees or in other spots that don’t get much sunlight. 

I have hostas all over my garden! They are so easy to care for and they come back year after year. 

I like to use Hostas to make my garden bed look fuller. Hostas also do well in keeping weeds out of my garden bed because they fill up all voids. 

Botanical nameHosta spp.
Sun or shadePartial shade to full shade
Watering requirementModerate to high
Soil requirementWell-drained, rich, and moist soil
ZoneVaries depending on the cultivar (generally zones 3-9)
Hostas Plant Facts

Check out: Hydrangeas vs Peonies: Pros and Cons

Why Plant Hydrangeas and Hostas Together

Complementary Sunlight Needs

One of the reasons I like planting both hydrangeas and hostas in my garden is because their sunlight needs are similar. 

Both hostas and hydrangeas enjoy some shade, which means they like to be planted in the same spot. 

Hydrangeas do well with morning sun and afternoon shade or afternoon sun and morning shade, while hostas thrive in shady to partly shady conditions. This means I can plant them next to each other and they will do well.

Similar Watering Preferences

Another reason why I like to plant hostas with hydrangeas is that they do well in well-drained soil and they really don’t need much supplemental watering once established. 

I water my established hydrangeas and hostas once a week (more if there is a heatwave) and that’s it. When I go on vacation and skip a week or two of watering- no problem. Both hydrangeas and hostas will thrive!

Hydrangeas and Hostas Look Good Together

Aesthetically, hydrangeas and hostas look great together! These two plants create a great balance in the garden. 

The hydrangea’s vibrant, colorful blooms offset the hosta’s rich, green foliage, making each plant stand out. 

Even when the hydrangeas aren’t in bloom, the hostas keep the garden looking fresh with their lush, textured leaves.

A Natural Deterrent to Deer

Interestingly, hostas have another advantage when planted next to hydrangeas – they help keep deer away from the hydrangeas. 

From my observations, deer seem to prefer hostas over hydrangeas. So, by planting hostas around my hydrangeas, I’ve noticed the deer go for the hostas and leave my beautiful hydrangeas alone.

How to Plant Hydrangeas with Hostas

Planting Hydrangeas and Hostas as a Border:

When planting hydrangeas and hostas as a border, keep in mind the height difference between the two plants. 

Hydrangeas and Hostas Border Planting Diagram

Hydrangeas are taller so they should be planted at the back. Then, place the hostas in front of the hydrangeas since they are shorter. 

I like to plant hydrangeas in a row and plant hostas in front of the hydrangeas in a row as well. 

This arrangement creates a nice border with the taller hydrangeas at the back and the shorter hostas at the front.

Planting Hydrangeas and Hostas in a Garden Bed:

If you have a large garden bed, you can make the hydrangea the main focal point. Plant it in a prominent spot within the bed. 

Hydrangeas and Hostas Garden Bed Planting Diagram

Around the hydrangea, plant the hostas strategically. This arrangement adds visual interest to the garden bed while keeping the hydrangea as the centerpiece.

Planting hydrangeas and hostas next to each other not only enhances my garden’s visual appeal but also made maintenance easier. 

If you’re searching for a dependable, beautiful duo to plant in your garden, you might want to try planting hostas with hydrangeas! 

You May Also be Interested in these Hydrangea Care Tips

Step by Step: How to Easily Propagate Hydrangeas (video)

How to Deadhead Hydrangeas (video)

How to Make Hydrangeas Flower (video)

Beginner’s Guide: How to Care for your Hydrangea (video)

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