There’s no need to prune an evergreen rhododendron. At least not every year. If you’d still like to trim your shrub into a particular shape or thin it out, it’s best to wait until after it has flowered. If you prune it too early, you risk cutting off the new flower buds. And that would be a shame, because then there would be no flowers the following year. Drastically pruning back to the old wood will result in vigorous regrowth.
How to prune a rhododendron
- Step 1: Timing is everything. If a cool, cloudy day is forecast, don your overalls and get out your pruning shears.
- Step 2: Always cut just above a young shoot or bud. Remove any barren or diseased wood.
- Step 3: Cut above an outward-facing shoot, so the centre of the shrub remains open.
Tip: Always use sharp pruning shears. For branches that are more than two centimetres thick, use loppers or a small saw.