The Q&A Archives: Transplant Rhodedendrum

Question: Can we transplant a very large rhodedendron (7ft. tall)? When can we do this? Must this be done professionally? Thanks for you help. Anne

Answer: You should be able to successfully transplant your rhododendron, but it will be quite a task because of its size. Expect the majority of the root system to be in the top 12-18" of soil and extend out past the longest branch. This is where you'll begin your digging. If you thoroughly soak the area the day before the move, the digging will be a little easier and the rootmass will tend to stay together. Try to keep the rootmass intact as much as possible. You'll probably sever some roots in the process but if the majority of the largest roots are not damaged, your rhodie should survive the move. Get it back into the ground as quickly as possible and make sure it is sitting at the same soil level as it was in its old home. Water well after moving your rhodie. Timing is important - cool, cloudy weather will keep it from becoming too stressed so spring or fall are the best times to move the plant but it can be done now.

Best wishes with your move!

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