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Wilting Rhododendrum

Hi, could anyone advise me on the best treatment for my sad looking Rhododendrum? I've looked up all the diseases and problems and none seem applicable. It was about this size when I moved to the house 5 years ago and used to be green and leafy. Last year it was a bit wilty looking but has got worse. I'm assuming the soil type is ok as there is another healthy Rhododendrum in the other bed and in our neighbour's garden. It looks like it has root rot going by the photos of diseases on line but I peeled back the bark and looked at a root and it is not brown and appears healthy. It had loads of flowers on this spring and also has some new growth. 

I'm tempted to cut it back as I don't know what else to do and see if it comes back to life, is this a good idea? I am an amateur gardener so not sure of what to do and I love the way it looks in flower so want to save it if possible.

Thanks for any help



  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Posts: 36,169

    Your soil looks very dry. Is your plant getting plenty of water? Its hard to tell from your picture but are there still dead flower heads on the plant. It might be worth thinking about removing them.

    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
  • Cathy-Cathy- Posts: 2

    Yes there are still dead flowers on it, should I remove them as soon as it's flowered? The soil is dry but I've never watered it before even in hotter summers but I'll start doing that. Thank you

  • Dave HumbyDave Humby Posts: 1,142

    Mine look like that before they've had a good drink and they perk up within hours. Rainwater is best if you have a rainwater butt or maybe a sprinkling of ericaceous feed and water. 

  • Ladybird4Ladybird4 Posts: 36,169

    If you can reach the flowers it is easy to just snap them off once they have died. This stops the seeds developing and the plant can just concetrate on developing healthy leaves and branches. As Dave says 'a good drink'.

    Cacoethes: An irresistible urge to do something inadvisable
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