All Things Gardening forum: to cut back or not to cut back

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mrsskro
May 20, 2012 10:57 AM CST
Any helpful hints or ideas will be greatly appreciated.........My Brother brought me this rhododendron from the greenhouse that he manages. It wasn't sellable so he thought I could bring it to life I don't know if it will help it to cut it back only to the new growth. should I cut it back or should I let it go?
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Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
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valleylynn
Jun 2, 2012 9:37 PM CST
I'm not an expert on rhodies, but I had one that looked like that a few years ago.
I pruned all the dead parts back to just above a healthy leaf node. I bounced back beautifully.
I would also re-pot it right away. Keep it in the shade.
Name: Speedie
Southern Maryland (Zone 7a)
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speediebean
Jun 4, 2012 3:11 AM CST
I agree I agree with Lynn, that is what I would do if I came across this baby at work... I work at a nursery. When transplanting it, I would make sure it was into some good organic nutrient-rich soil/mix, and give it a good feeding too, while I'm at it.
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In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt. ~ Margaret Atwood
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Jun 4, 2012 9:47 AM CST
Hi Speediebean. Love your avatar. Thumbs up
Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Database Moderator Forum moderator Aroids Irises Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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eclayne
Jun 4, 2012 4:13 PM CST

Plants Admin

Me three. Good advice.

What's your soil like? Acidic enough? Maybe a spray of anti-desiccant this winter to help it get a good start.
Evan
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Jun 4, 2012 5:15 PM CST
It will turn into a lovely swan of a rhodie.
Seattle WA. Zone 7
Charter ATP Member
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Sherri
Jul 28, 2012 7:41 PM CST
I was hoping to find a thread on rhodies.
We have inherited a lovely but quite large one I would like to cut back a bit. When is the best time of the year to do that?
Do I just try not to cut all the way back to old growth?
Thanks!
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level Sempervivums
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valleylynn
Jul 28, 2012 7:57 PM CST
In my experience rhodies are pretty forgiving. Prune back to any set of rosettes, depending on how drastically it is desired to prune. Always make the cut about a quarter of an inch above the rosette.
They can be pruned at any time without harming the plant. If buds are already set for next year, you might miss a year of blooms.
Seattle WA. Zone 7
Charter ATP Member
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Sherri
Jul 28, 2012 9:42 PM CST
Thanks!

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