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Author Topic: cut back  (Read 6434 times)

birck j c

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cut back
« on: June 06, 2011, 08:24:45 PM »
2 years ago this Fantastika was cut back (quite violent)
leaving only tree shoots to draw the sap.
(250) photo taken 4 weeks after cut back - note "sleeping eyes" come to live.
(630) 3 weeks ago - amazing numbers of flowers
(097) From today - looking new and well shaped.

jens
"Bana belt" close to Copenhagen - Denmark

Maggi Young

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Re: cut back
« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2011, 09:02:55 PM »
A very good example of why Rhodos make such excellent garden plants. If they become too large or are damaged in some way, falling trees etc, they will almost always respond as Jen's plant has done... soon you will not know there was a problem and have a smart  'new' bush  ;D
Margaret Young in Aberdeen, North East Scotland Zone 7 -ish!

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maggiepie

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Re: cut back
« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2011, 09:27:33 PM »
What a beautiful rhodo, am so glad you posted this, I only have three and all are gnarly and leggy.
Is there a best time to prune like this?
Spring or could I do it after they flower?


Helen Poirier , Australia

johnw

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Re: cut back
« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2011, 09:35:22 PM »
Well done Jens, a great success.

I think I'll go out and prune my Rhododendron barbatum back like that!  ;)

johnw
John in coastal Nova Scotia

Lesley Cox

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Re: cut back
« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2011, 10:46:27 PM »
Our city council workers gave similar treatment to a stand of quite young plants where a motorway extenstion is now being put in. They were cut back maybe a year ago. Some were taken away and I don't know their fate, but only some of those remaining have grown away again. They should have moved the lot, being, as a long ago friend called rhododendrons, "wheelbarrow plants." She was continually digging them and planting elsewhere as her garden developed, and was always successful in their re-establishment.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2011, 10:53:14 PM by Lesley Cox »
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

birck j c

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Re: cut back
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2011, 08:19:07 AM »
maggiepie when You describe your 3 rhodies as " all are gnarly and leggy"
then there is no problem trying to cut them back.
Live is too short to keep looking on these.

Failing would give You the possibility to buy some new ones - pleasing the eye.
 
Cutting back would give app. 50% success with hybrids and for species 10%.

Here (110) my Furnival's daughter cut back for the third time in a period of 15yrs.

Best cutting time would be just after flowering and before the new growth.

And to JohnW --  I think your NS winter will spare you the job. ;D
"Bana belt" close to Copenhagen - Denmark

maggiepie

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Re: cut back
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2011, 12:22:52 PM »
Thanks for the advice, Jens, will cut them back after they flower.
I don't want to miss the flowers as I didn't get any last year due to a late frost.
The plants usually have around 4 feet of snow over them during winter which causes breakages and mishapen limbs.
Helen Poirier , Australia

Maggi Young

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Re: cut back
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2011, 01:55:45 PM »
Quote
Cutting back would give app. 50% success with hybrids and for species 10%.

We've found rather higher success rates than that, Jens... but perhaps our climate is kinder.
Margaret Young in Aberdeen, North East Scotland Zone 7 -ish!

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Martin Baxendale

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Re: cut back
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2011, 02:00:14 PM »
Quote
Cutting back would give app. 50% success with hybrids and for species 10%.

We've found rather higher success rates than that, Jens... but perhaps our climate is kinder.

I believe in drier areas it helps to regularly spray shrubs (and hedges) that have been cut back very hard into bare old wood, to encourage them to break into new growth. Of course with rhodos it would be advisable to use non-limy water.
Martin Baxendale, Gloucestershire, UK.

birck j c

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Re: cut back
« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2011, 07:19:35 PM »
There are also some more gentle ways to reduce the size of your rhododendrons.

A. When the new growth is just full developed they are very brittle , like glass.
    And very easy to break of. (001)(002)
    Often the result would be 3 new shoots coming on with reduced length.(003)

B. Shave your bush, again just after the new growth is full developed.
    Oreotrephes being shawed (004)
    8 weeks later flower buds in great numbers (005)
"Bana belt" close to Copenhagen - Denmark

Paddy Tobin

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Re: cut back
« Reply #10 on: June 07, 2011, 07:27:59 PM »
I  have seen old and very large rhododendrons pruned in Mount Congreve with chain saws. They all come back to make lower bushy plants.
Paddy
Paddy Tobin, Waterford, Ireland

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johnw

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Re: cut back
« Reply #11 on: June 07, 2011, 09:08:16 PM »
Quote
Cutting back would give app. 50% success with hybrids and for species 10%.

We've found rather higher success rates than that, Jens... but perhaps our climate is kinder.

I believe in drier areas it helps to regularly spray shrubs (and hedges) that have been cut back very hard into bare old wood, to encourage them to break into new growth. Of course with rhodos it would be advisable to use non-limy water.

I think you're on to something Martin. Here if we wait to prune elepidote Rhododendrons until they've flowered they  - or at least many variety excluding the very early flowerers - oftentimes do not have time to develop new shoots especially if it is dry following.  In wet summers things improve.  In the southern part of NS where spring is earlier and summers moister with rain and more fog the rhodos have a greater propensity to be bushy and produce shoots wherever light strikes bark.  Not so much up this way.  A good daily spraying of the trunk and a weekly soaking of the rootball might just improve results.

In colder areas I'd say the earlier the better.  Jens?

johnw
John in coastal Nova Scotia

birck j c

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Re: cut back
« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2011, 11:23:11 PM »
I think sap flow must be at maximum to get the sleeping eyes to react.
And max must be when the new growth is developed
jens
"Bana belt" close to Copenhagen - Denmark

Lesley Cox

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Re: cut back
« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2011, 10:24:39 PM »
That's a fearsome set of pruners or "shavers" in pic 004. I can think of a few sets of dreadlocks I's like to use them on. ;D
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

birck j c

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Re: cut back
« Reply #14 on: July 14, 2011, 09:08:39 AM »
Shown 5 weeks ago, now sprouting for full. (200).

jens
"Bana belt" close to Copenhagen - Denmark

 


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