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How to Transplant a Rhododendron

This Old House landscape contractor Roger Cook shows how to successfully move a large rhododendron shrub to a new location

In this video, This Old House landscape contractor Roger Cook shows how to successfully move a large rhododendron shrub to a new location.

Steps:

1. Excavate a 12-inch-deep hole at the new planting site.

2. Dig a 5-foot-diameter circle around the rhododendron. Dig down past the roots, at least 6 inches deep.

3. Use a transplanting shovel to slice through any roots around and beneath the root ball.

4. Truss up the branches with rope to protect them during transport to the new planting site.

5. Use a small excavator equipped with forks to lift the rhododendron from its original location, and carry it to the new planting hole.

6. Spread a thick layer of compost into the hole and turn it into the soil with a pointed shovel.

7. Set the rhododendron into the hole, rotating it until its best side faces out toward the house. Cut the rope from the branches.

8. Sprinkle some starter fertilizer and super phosphate over a mound of compost.

9. Mix the amended compost into the soil and shovel it around the plant. Rake the soil smooth.

10. Water the plant continuously throughout the summer.