If you have tall, thin azalea bushes that have grown up in front of the windows of your home you have two options. Of course, one option would be to remove them and replace them with a lower growing variety of azalea or another shrub. The other option is to severely prune them back. This is often referred to as rejuvenation pruning. Rejuvenation pruning is done by cutting them back to within 12 inches from the ground during the late winter. Azaleas pruned in this fashion normally take-off growing very vigorously with numerous growth shoots as the weather warms up.
Of course, severely pruning azaleas will remove most, if not all, of the buds for this spring’s blooms. But, they should be back to blooming normally next spring with much thicker growth and in a more desirable size for their location.
For answers to other azalea problems or more details on rejuvenation pruning call the Walker County Extension Office at 638-2548.
Norman Edwards is coordinator of Walker County Extension Service.