Poor Little Rhododendron

I hope that everyone enjoyed a lovely Easter Sunday with family and friends.  Though none of our daughters or my grandson were home this weekend, all four of our parents were able to join us for Easter dinner and we really enjoyed the day.  The weather cooperated with above average, spring temperatures and lots of sun.  The flowers above were given to us by Charlie’s parents…I love that sunny yellow.

I even managed to do a bit of puttering around the deck.  This poor little rhododendron!  I’m hoping some amended, acidic soil and a healthy dose of fertilizer will energize the poor thing…though I’m told it blooms every year.  I slaughtered gently removed another shrub that had been planted too close to Rhodie and was intertwined throughout her spindly branches.  From a distance, you can still see the faint outline of a “bed”, so it should be fairly easy to work the soil.  I borrowed my Dad’s edger and hope to make a nice bed here.  You can’t tell from this photo, but Rhodie is planted on a bit of a slope, so we’ll use some timber or rocks to level the bed when I get it worked up.

Given that she’s had no attention for years…probably since it was planted, it looks fairly healthy, so I hope for the best.  I’ll take another photo at summer’s end to compare.

And this is how the day ended, as taken from my deck.  It was an appropriately beautiful sunset for the day.


Author: nancybond

A writer, photographer, naturalist from small town Nova Scotia, Canada.

12 thoughts on “Poor Little Rhododendron”

  1. That “poor little rhodie” is doing fine, Nancy. You really have to worry when they get yellowish – (chlorotic) – because they thrive in an acidic soil. It’s why a lot of people feed them once a year with some Rhodie and Azalea plant food – or anything high acid.Those droopy leaves are usually from cold weather or else a lack of water………..nothing much more. It has good color and I bet it kicks out some big old blooms for you.

    Thanks so much for the vote of confidence, Steve! I’ll let you know how it does. :)

  2. Dear Nancy, I am inclined to agree with all that Steve has said. A little tlc and I should not, if I were you, be overly concerned. I very much hope that these are not famous last words!

  3. Wow, what a sunset! I’m thinking of trying to grow a rhododendron this year. Do you know the coldest zone it can grow in? We might be zone 3 in some spots. Will it make it? Thanks for any info.


    Hi Nan — from what I’ve discovered online, most varieties are hardy from zones 4-8, (we’re 5b and they do very well here in NS) but I have seen varieties that do well in zone 3-8, so best you discuss it with your local nursery, and there may be a variety that would do better than others. :-) They are among my favourite flowers and I love their year round green.

  4. Nancy !
    I wish I could have seen that there too : )
    I am a complete sky addict and it amazes me all the time between the clouds the sun and the moon .. which a few mornings ago was stunning with luminous clouds floating around it .
    I am looking for another azalea but maybe a rhodo might do the trick too .. I’m sure yours will be happy as the days get warmer : ) as will we all ? LOL


    I’ve had rhodies before, and they did very well with the right feedings and mulch. :) They’re great companions for azaleas as they need the same type of soil and fertilizer. Good luck with whatever you get, and I hope it’s as gorgeous a day in ON as it is here.

  5. Nancy-
    I’m so glad you had a warm and sunny day for Easter!. And what lovely flowers. And your sunsets are so spectacular and varied. Hope spring moves in nicely…

  6. We had some very neglected rhododendrons here from the previous owners. It was remarkable what a little TLC did for them. Last year, one that had never bloomed since we moved here was ablaze with blossoms. They’re quite resilient. I’m sure your little rhodie will do fine.

  7. Nancy, I am thrilled that you are nursing a rhodie and getting to play on ground level in the dirt! Am I right in thinking this is right outside your patio in the new apartment? A few bulbs this fall and you’ll have a great vignette next spring…gail


    Yes, Gail, this little rhodie is just a few feet off the front of the deck here in the new apartment. Topographically, the little bit of green space we have presents a challenge as it is almost entirely on a slope, and is also quite mossy due to the huge pine trees that line the front boundary. I’m thinking a rock garden for one of the steepest slopes with some ground cover type plants and the rest is up to my whimsy, I guess. I’ll take a photo from the street so you can see what I mean. :)

  8. I hope your rhodie does well. I’m too far south for rhodies, but their cousins azaleas do well. I’m glad you had a good Easter. The sunset photo is gorgeous. We also had a fantastic sunset. ( though I did not get a photo. )

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