This Two-Colored Hydrangea Is Named After the Pistachio Nut

updated May 17, 2020
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When you think of hydrangea, maybe you think of the pastel pink, blue, and purple versions in your grandma’s yard or on the birthday cards she sent you. But these plants come in many colors — sometimes multiple colors per plant. The “pistachio” hydrangea is an especially bold and colorful variety.

Officially called Hydrangea macrophylla “Horwack,” this flower is nicknamed the pistachio hydrangea because it shares its pink and green coloring with the pistachio nut.

Depending on the individual plant and its growing conditions, it can be on the pinker or greener side and range from a hot, bougainvillea pink to a more muted reddish brown. (The photo at the top of this post likely shows a different, though similar, two-color hydrangea.)

According to Southern Living, this dwarf hydrangea grows up to three feet high and four feet wide and can thrive in a container or garden bed in zones 5-9 (in other words, most parts of the country besides the Upper Midwest). They like moist, well-drained soil and partial shade. 

Pistachio hydrangeas are low-maintenance too: They don’t require pruning, and a slow-release fertilizer in the spring before they bloom will help them stay healthy. They can be poisonous if ingested, though, so be careful if you have children or pets.

Hydrangeas come in over 70 species, though only six are commonly grown in gardens in the United States. Hydrangea macrophylla like the pistachio are also known as bigleaf hydrangea, and their petals are arranged in the shape of a ball. Other species are more sparse, conical, or even grow in the form of vines. Each species contains diverse varieties. Some especially beautiful ones include the Zinfin Doll, the Blue Deckle, and the Unique hydrangea.