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Cityline® Rio Bigleaf hydrangea Hydrangea macrophylla

  • Part Sun to Sun
  • Sun

The optimum amount of sun or shade each plant needs to thrive: Full Sun (6+ hours), Part Sun (4-6 hours), Full Shade (up to 4 hours).

Flower Season
  • Spring
  • Summer
Mature Size
3' 3'
2' - 3'
2' - 3'
  • Details


    We’re sorry but this plant is no longer available; the information on this page is for reference only.

    Small to medium sized early blooming hydrangea with large, long lasting flowers. Mildew resistant. Compact.

    Salt Tolerant
    Small or Miniature


    Plant Type: 
    Shrub Type: 
    Height Category: 
    Garden Height: 
    24 - 36 Inches
    36 - 48 Inches
    24 - 36 Inches
    Flower Colors: 
    Flower Colors: 
    Flower Colors: 
    Flower Shade: 
    depends on soil
    Foliage Colors: 
    Foliage Shade: 
    Container Role: 

    Plant Needs

    Light Requirement: 
    Part Sun to Sun
    Light Requirement: 
    Maintenance Category: 
    Blooms On: 
    Old Wood
    Bloom Time: 
    Early Summer
    Bloom Time: 
    Mid Summer
    Bloom Time: 
    Late Summer
    Hardiness Zones: 
    5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
    Water Category: 
    Cut Flower
    Dried Flower
    Uses Notes: 

    A dramatic centerpiece for mixed container designs. Also great for mixed borders and perennial gardens.

    Maintenance Notes: 

    Add aluminum sulfate to the soil to encourage blue flower color.

    Early blooming, compact plant.

    A small to medium, early blooming selection with large flowers that range from strong blue to purple depending on the soil; add aluminum sulfate to the soil to encourage blue flower color. The blooms are large and long lasting. This plant has excellent mildew resistance, and makes a great container plant. Like the other Cityline hydrangeas, Rio is compact so it does not need pruning. It's perfect for foundation plantings and milder-climate container gardens.

    Cityline® Rio Hydrangea macrophylla 'Ragra' N/A
  • 20 Reviews

    Browse reviews from people who have grown this plant.
    • I have grown several of these for 5-8 years, and I can safely say that it is NOT hardy in zone 5 if you want flowers. It kills to the ground every year, which precludes it from flowering. It is disease resistant and compact - I'll give them that. If you live in a warmer zone it might be great for you, but not on the colder end of the spectrum they list.

      , New Hampshire
      , United States
      , 27 weeks ago
    • I am a landscape designer in Portland Oregon. I used 6 Hydrangea 'Rio' along a foundation at a client's front entry. They have been a spectacular success. They gave us beautiful blooms from the first growing season. They have now been in the ground 3 years and still going strong. I'm not understanding the other reviews. So I thought I would share my experience with Hydrangea 'Rio'.

      Jacque Robinsons Garden Design
      , Oregon
      , United States
      , 33 weeks ago
    • It has never bloomed. I have tried in a container and in the ground.

      , Maryland
      , United States
      , 1 year ago
    • I ordered this plant in one-gallon size on July 11, 2017. All I have ever seen on it are green leaves. It dies back every winter. And develops green leaves every spring, but never any flowers of any color. Very disappointed. We have deer and rabbits. I just saw a video that suggests they may be the culprit. Perhaps. But the plant is still quite small and I would think they might would have devoured all of it. And I have seen no evidence that it's been munched on.

      Amy Puckett
      , North Carolina
      , United States
      , 1 year ago
    • i have the cityline rio which i love but there are 3 sizes i got which i did not know pruned them all back but there is 1 big one

      vivian gerard
      , British Columbia
      , Canada
      , 1 year ago
    • I have grown this plant for probably 5-6 seasons in zone 5. It is in the correct location (part->full sun), well watered and not pruned. It dies back to the ground EVERY YEAR. I have seen a single flower on 4 plants in all that time. I plan to remove it and give it away or compost it. It clearly is not truly hardy in zn 5. They should relabel to zones where it actually performs as stated.

      Jennifer Dionne
      , New Hampshire
      , United States
      , 2 years ago
    • Since planting these in May they have taken off. So far I have one pink one and the rest bluish purple and I believe it because I did not include fertilizer in that one when I planted it. These are soooooo pretty and I can’t wait to see how big they get next year. Hopefully I won’t have to tend to them as much as I had to this year so far and it’s late June. But because they are in full sun and are babes I believe the harsh sun dries it out a bit so I have to water in early morning and evening when temperatures go above 90 degrees. I love these plants wish I could show pictures. Get you one or some, I got the gallon ones cause I like BIG! Some say I have a green thumb but I just love flowers anything you love you take care of!

      Arty John
      , Michigan
      , United States
      , 3 years ago
    • I ordered six of these from Home Depot...received very small plants, five of which did not survive the winter. They were planted in May and cared for according to recommendations, but only one has come up (they didn't even get woody last year)...and the winter here in Maryland was very mild. Beautiful pictures, but for me, not a reality.

      , Maryland
      , United States
      , 3 years ago
    • I have yet to see blooms on this plant after 3 years. Same with the Berlin planted next to it. Venice, in a different location, is gorgeous with blooms every year. All are of the compact Cityline type.

      , Pennsylvania
      , United States
      , 3 years ago
    • Looked great at first planted by the front door...then overnight all plants were completely devoured by deer. Won't grow back. Wish I had been warned. Can my $70+ be refunded?

      R Fong
      , California
      , United States
      , 5 years ago
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