New wood is this season’s growth. Next spring, this growth will be considered “old wood,” and this is where some plants form their blooms. It is important to prune at the right time for specific varieties as to not disturb the blooming cycle.
Limelight hydrangeas bloom on new growth only and should be trimmed to 1/3 of their original size when they have gone into true dormancy in the winter. Throughout the season if there are dead branches or stems those can be pruned out close to the base.
Endless Summer hydrangeas bloom on new growth and old growth. What this means is that customers should avoid pruning heavily during the winter because they are potentially cutting off next seasons blooms. If they leave the old growth, trimming out dead or spindly branches, they can expect double the blooms next season.
Nikko Blue hydrangeas bloom on old growth only. This means if they are cut back in late summer, early fall, the buds for next seasons blooms will likely be cut off. These hydrangeas should only be pruned sparingly, for shaping purposes and to remove spindly/dead/dying stems.
Oakleaf hydrangeas bloom on old wood also. Again, the shrub can be shaped in early summer shortly after flowering, but next seasons blooms are already set on the plant by late summer. Pruning in the fall will remove next seasons blooms.