I love hydrangeas, all colors, all sizes and all varieties. One of my new favorites is Quick Fire hydrangea. It is among the earliest blooming hydrangeas here in zone 4; about a month earlier than other hydrangea paniculata varieties. The flowers open white, then turn a soft pink. In the fall the flowers will be a dark rosy pink, almost maroon color. These hydrangeas grow 6-8 feet tall and they have longevity - can live up to 40 years!
If you are looking for a smaller, more compact plant I just learned about Little Quick Fire which tops off at 3-5'. I'm tempted to add one of these to my growing hydrangea collection!
For flower arrangers, Quick Fire provides big beautiful blooms all summer and fall as a cut flower. For pressed flower artists, like myself, the plant provides large florets on each bloom ranging from ¾ “ to sometimes 3" wide. These florets are so easy to press in a Microfleur or in a traditional flower press. They are perfect primary flowers for pressed flower designs and also wonderful compliments to many other focal flowers.
Below is a popular piece that has been recreated several times. Quick Fire florets are the primary flower. It is embellished with princess spirea sprigs and tiny spirea flowers and is in a cherry wood frame. If you are interested in knowing more about this piece, you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.