Garden nurseries have been touting the new Incrediball Hydrangea as a great improvement on the Hydrangea aborescens 'Annabelle'. According to the hype, the Incrediball has: (1) stronger stems so that the flowers do not flop in the rain and (2) bigger flowers and more of them!
I purchased the biggest Incrediball plant I could find last year.
The plant grew quickly, but it did have problems with flopping over in the rain, and I did have to stake some of the stems.
This year, however, the plant has been much sturdier. The blooms will bend somewhat when wet, but will usually straighten back up as they dry.
Here it is in August:
The hype also claims that the blooms are bigger than the Annabelle. I can't really tell. My Incrediball blooms get up to 10" in diameter. The claim is that they get to 12". We'll see next year.. Look at all those blooms, though!
I've been very pleased with my Incrediball. In the eyes of the Red House, it's lived up to most of the hype :)
My hydrangea is located in a rather sheltered corner of our house, with morning sun and afternoon shade. I only water it occasionally; I think it stays somewhat moist from condensation due to being next to the house. It is very fast growing. I thought I had left plenty of room for it, but I might have to move some plants to make room for it if it gets any bigger!