This is a photo-heavy post, as it is a tutorial of sorts. The basic method of making the hydrangea bush is the same as for the geraniums, i.e. a dome of Crayola Model Magic on a stem, painted the colour of the flowers. (Click on the photos to enlarge them for better visibility.) You can go back to the geranium tutorial if you haven't seen it before.
I used a 3-leaf punch for the leaves, and hand-painted paper in a very lively light green; this is actually the back of the leaf paper, but hydrangea leaves are quite a bright green. The blossoms were punched with a custom punch from Hanky Panky Crafts, their tiniest 5-petal blossom, and a blue greeting card envelope with some variation in colour on the inside, which means more realistic flower colours.
The dome is a green-painted, halved styrofoam ball. The blossoms on the right are already covered, while those in front are the ones with "buds", very pale green-painted poppy seeds. The leaf wires were completed earlier; there are 5 with 5 sets of leaves, and 4 with 3 sets of leaves. Some additional leaves were cut and shaped ready to fill in gaps when the flowers were "planted".
I cut off a small portion of the plant base, as this plant like the other one, will sit up against one of the walls. Before planting, I add a pair of leaf sets below each blossom. (The pointy things on the right are the variegated leaves for the iris.)
This is just the flower heads glued into the foam base; start with the tallest at the back, gradually cutting them shorter down towards the front. Remember that the plants can still be shaped into pleasing curves, once the glue is completely dry.
This is the completed bush, with the leaf stems added and a few additional leaf sets added here and there to fill in empty spots.
And here they are, placed in their corner. The empty space behind them will, hopefully, be filled with a small, cloud-pruned pine; I still have to source the blue-green foam foliage for this, not to mention making the trunk. It will be done after the show this weekend, but perhaps in time for the miniature presentation I am doing for a rural library the middle of May. The grass has now been filled in over the green-painted area, and the left side of the garden courtyard is now DONE! Well, except for the hoped-for cloud pine.
Having two bushes in this area is much better than just the one, I think. The white strip on the base is where the large front gate will go.