I have some Rhodies I'd like to dig up and move to a different location. Can I do it now, or is there a better time of year? They are blooming now. Should I wait until they are more dormant?
I'd rather do it now while the weather is nice, but not if it means they will die. They are about 5 feet tall and wide.
Is there a certain time of year that is best for transplanting Rhododendrons?
Moving anything when it's in bloom is about the most stressful time. Fall is best. When the plant is no longer putting out new growth, and going dormant for the winter.
Plus - although the air is cool - the soil is still warm, so the roots can be growing and recovering for some weeks after transplant before the ground freezes.
Dig as much of the root ball as you can manage. Use a root stimulator in the watering after you move it. Actually, if you have time to plan...take a straight shovel, and dig a circle straight down around the drip line of the plant a few weeks before actually moving it. This will let it recover from having some of the larger roots that might be extending beyond the drip line, to recover from the shock and grow new small roots inside the dripline before the actual move happens. Cuts down on transplant shock.
The best time to transplant Rhododendrons or most other plant specimens is in the fall. Don't transplant them while they are in bloom. I am a landscaper and designer, and if you have to transplant them before fall, transplant them after they are done blooming.
I will link you to the landscape article section of my website. There is a page on properly transplanting shrubs. You may be able to get some information from this page. It shows you the correct way to transplant a shrub. I will also link you to the site map, as this page has everything that is on the website. Browse through and see if you can find any other information that may help you. Good luck with your transplanting of your Rhododendron and have a great day!
Reply:It would be preferable to transplant in the Autumn,rather than while the plants are in full flower.
Late Sept;/early Oct;while the soil is warm will allow the shrubs to make fresh roots,also avoid the blooms dropping prematurely.
Meanwhile,dig around the bushes to loosen the roots and encourage the growth of new ones.
Avoid cutting the taproot (The main,thick root)
and when lifting water well beforehand,then lift with a good ball of soil around the roots.
Big,strong guys needed,a five foot high rhododendron with its root ball will be heavy!
Reply:it depends on where you live. but later fall or early spring. once everythink goes dormet and before it starts to bud out. make sure you dig the hole deep enough for the roots dont crowd them and give it a good watering.