Excellent Blog by Julianne Palazzo
Cape Cod’s 5th Annual Hydrangea Festival kicks off with a party on Thursday, July 11 at Cape Cod Beer. Then, it’s ten days of expansive garden tours, horticulturist-lead discussions, and hydrangea-inspired cocktails!
Bursting from Woods Hole to Provincetown, these cheerful blooms are as quintessentially Cape Cod as cranberries and seashells. The Cape-wide event gives locals and visitors alike an opportunity to tour some of the region’s most spectacular private gardens.
In keeping with tradition, all styles of garden will be on display this year, from precision-quaffed grounds to wild botanical wonderlands. In some, hydrangeas are a supporting player; in others, they’re the star of the show. Proceeds from each $5 tour benefit local nonprofits.
With over 70 outstanding garden tours to choose from, it’s important to remember not all gardens are available to tour daily. The list of open gardens, and participating non-profits, is included on the Hydrangea Festival event flyer .
Leisurely strolls through enchanting gardens are the heart of Hydrangea Fest. However, if you’re also interested in pruning demonstrations or an introduction to growth characteristics, Heritage Museums & Gardens in Sandwich is happy to provide. Your museum admission grants your access to the expanded North American Hydrangea Test Garden, the Cape Cod Hydrangea Society’s Display Garden, and enables you to tour Heritage’s gardens, which include more than 170 cultivars of the signature shrub.
Breathing in delicate floral scents, viewing cotton candy blooms, and hearing horticulturalists share their expertise – the Hydrangea Festival really is an experience for the senses. The Hydrangea Fest Cocktail Trail organized by Cape Cod Beer ensures that taste isn’t left out. Each of the 30 participating locations is serving their own hydrangea-inspired cocktail, only available for the ten days of the event.
In the mood for a beer or in the market for a hydrangea of your own? Head to Dennis on Friday for the Agway of Cape Cod Beer Garden. Enjoy a craft brew from Devil’s Purse Brewing Company, while perusing a mecca of more than 60 hybrid shrubs.
Sprays of fuchsia and clouds of salmon pink might leave you yearning for a bit of the festival to take home. The Hyannis HyArts Artist Shanties offer a variety of hydrangea-themed items to solve this very problem. Each vibrantly colored hut serves as a short-term studio for local artists. Freshly cut arrangements, hand-painted scarves, and pottery are just a few of the gifts available for purchase.
Feeling motivated to do a little creating yourself? Various artists will be hosting painting demonstrations. During the second half of the festival, free coloring book pages and a “Buried Treasure” activity will be available for kids at select shanties.
Hydrangea Festival runs from July 12 to July 21. Each garden is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. only on the tour days specified. Touring gardens will display signs showing the Cape Cod Hydrangea Festival logo. Each garden has a $5 non-refundable cash entry free.