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Old 02-04-2018, 11:34 AM
 
Location: N of citrus, S of decent corn
32,079 posts, read 40,276,620 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steiconi View Post
I think cutting them to the ground is excessive, and it would take quite a while for them to come back to looking good.

I would start trimming them more casually; just snip back the longest branches, so the whole hedge gets a more rounded, natural shape.
I would use this method, only I would do 1/3, 1/3, 1/3. Year one, cut back 1/3 of the branches right after they flower, or before if you donít care about the flowers, down to a bud close to the main stem. Do this for the next two years. This way, you donít decimate the plants all at once, and itís gradual, instead of a chainsaw massacre.
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Old 02-04-2018, 11:38 AM
 
5,626 posts, read 4,383,971 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gentlearts View Post
i would use this method, only i would do 1/3, 1/3, 1/3. Year one, cut back 1/3 of the branches right after they flower, or before if you don’t care about the flowers, down to a bud close to the main stem. Do this for the next two years. This way, you don’t decimate the plants all at once, and it’s gradual, instead of a chainsaw massacre.
That does sound a little harsh when you put it that way, doesn't it?
Another good idea.
Thanks!
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Old 02-04-2018, 11:40 AM
 
Location: annandale, va & slidell, la
5,751 posts, read 2,223,000 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by .sparrow. View Post
Oh, very interesting! Ok, so there is a little hope!
This makes sense. I'm going to try it once the weather warms up a bit.
The hedge itself is not very long, maybe about 12 feet long.
Thank you so much for taking the time to help me out!
Much appreciated!!


(and if all else fails, if I turn out not to be much of a green thumb with this, I'll take Mr.Rational's advice.)


Thanks guys!
Oh, I thought it was like the pic. I'd get that done in an hour!
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Old 02-04-2018, 11:43 AM
 
Location: annandale, va & slidell, la
5,751 posts, read 2,223,000 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by southernnaturelover View Post
Take a chainsaw and cut them to the ground, theyíll come right back from the roots and will be a natural shape.

I agree with you though, I hate ďformalĒ hedged shrubs.
Tell me how that works out! Major stress and moisture loss. OP, this is not good advice.
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Old 02-04-2018, 11:52 AM
 
Location: annandale, va & slidell, la
5,751 posts, read 2,223,000 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LIcenter View Post
I have to agree with MrRational. You ain't gonna get the pretty back. When you start trimming away, you are going to find both sides of the bush are going to be naked. I don't think you will ever get enough lateral growth to fill in those areas. At least, not for quite some time anyway. (By that I mean years)
2-years and the plants would be nice looking and ready for normal pruning.
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Old 02-04-2018, 02:56 PM
 
Location: LI,NY zone 7a
1,956 posts, read 800,743 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by finalmove View Post
2-years and the plants would be nice looking and ready for normal pruning.
I disagree. All the lower branches are all woody, and will not send out new shoots like you say. Top and front, yes, but not the side growth. Where are those new shoots going to come from down that low. Not gonna happen. Now if you womped the entire plant down to a foot it may happen, and it won't be two years, even with your super duper fertilizer.
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Old 02-04-2018, 03:56 PM
 
366 posts, read 80,927 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by finalmove View Post
You absolutely can revise the appearance, but it is some work. Too bad they used azaleas for a hedge.
It looks like they are spaced about 4-5 feet apart.

Get some quality pruners and begin by removing all growth that is the diameter of a pencil. Nothing larger for now. Emphasis on the horizontal growth----it will separate the plants as you go and will become easier as you understand what you're doing.

You will end up with a line of jelly-bean shaped plants. They can be tuned-up later if needed. This will admit light into the interior and force growth deeper in the plant. You will be removing a lot of blossom buds for this season, but it has to be done.

You will have an enormous pile of clippings, but the improvement in appearance will be satisfying. Plus you will be absolved from people thinking you were responsible for an azalea hedge!

Follow with an application of PLANT TRUST 21-5-12 fertilizer. It's available everywhere so don't tell me you can't find it!
Sling it like chicken feed along the full length of the planting. You will be amazed at the results and you will become a believer!
Don't use anything else and don't be swayed by a know-it-all neighbor!

Good luck!
Good ideas. Have you found Plant Trust 21-5-12 in a brick and mortar store? I see it online. Thanks.
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Old 02-04-2018, 05:57 PM
 
Location: S.W. British Columbia
5,144 posts, read 5,214,746 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by .sparrow. View Post


....... How can I get the azaleas OUT of this shape? I just want them to look like normal azaleas all kind of flowing and bush-shaped. Not a rectangle hedge....... They're not even very tall, only about 3 feet tall.

Okay, first things first. Exactly how many individual azalea plants are in your 12 foot long hedge?

You will need to work on each one of those individual plants one plant at a time to get them distinctly separated from each other, thinned out and each one back into a shrubby shape of its own with airy space in between each plant. The hedge as it is now is not a single entity with a single growth habit and each one of the individual plants that makes up a part of the hedge is going to be a little different and have different growth habits from all the others. You will need to discover the habits of each plant before you can start working on it. So how many plants are there? If you don't know, go out and count the main trunks that grow out of the ground.

If they're all three feet tall and have always been that way they probably aren't ever going to get much taller than three or four feet tall. Azaleas are generally short shrubs that like to spread out horizontally rather than vertically so that they can become fuller, more bushy and rounded.

.
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Old 02-04-2018, 05:58 PM
 
Location: annandale, va & slidell, la
5,751 posts, read 2,223,000 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LIcenter View Post
I disagree. All the lower branches are all woody, and will not send out new shoots like you say. Top and front, yes, but not the side growth. Where are those new shoots going to come from down that low. Not gonna happen. Now if you womped the entire plant down to a foot it may happen, and it won't be two years, even with your super duper fertilizer.
Not true, but I'm finished with the thread. Been in the nursery business off and on since 1966. I'm widely known in the Northern Virginia area for my plant expertise and especially my pruning techniques.
Good luck to the OP.
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Old 02-04-2018, 07:47 PM
 
Location: Floribama
12,646 posts, read 28,074,899 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by finalmove View Post
Tell me how that works out! Major stress and moisture loss. OP, this is not good advice.
Works great, Iíve done it many times. Itís called rejuvenation pruning, Google it.
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