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Shaping a rhododendron


I'd like to give this rhododendron a neater shape but I've read they don't like being pruned.  When would be a good time to trim the left hand side of this one to make it all the same height?  Or would that just be a really bad idea?




  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 50,221

    Rhodies can be pruned without any issue. I've never understood why they say you shouldn't prune them. We'd be snowed under with the da*n things up here if that was the case!

    You might want to wait till it's flowered, but it won't suffer if you do it before. You'll just not get the flowers this year.

    Probbaly better in early/mid summer before it starts forming the new buds for next year. image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Yep, as soon as the flowers fade, because not only will the plant benefit from not having to produce seed (it takes a lot out of a plant to do that), but it'll hardly notice the trim as it'll be the time of year when the sap's rising so fast all it will want to do is grow.


  • Thanks for the advice - I'll wait for the flowers to fade then prune it.  I'm not sure that the two taller stems are the ones that have bolted, more that the tall bit is the main stem and the rest are side branches.  

    The plant actually came from a cutting we took from a rhodie in a country park in Shropshire. It was growing in a pot for almost 2 years down in Nottinghamshire and then we planted it up here in Aberdeenshire about 5 years ago.  It flowers quite nicely and we're quite pleased with it, given that it spent a few hours wrapped in damp kitchen paper in a plastic bag in a rucksack between being liberated from its parent and being unceremoniously stuck in random compost in a pot we had kicking about. image

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