Our Rhododendrons are right at home in this hot and humid place we call the South. That’s right; these blooms are heat tolerant. Some would say that makes them truly Southern at heart. They certainly have my heart with one reason being the bloom power. I like being able to clip from my garden, bring blooms inside, and have them to enjoy for a few days.
Southgate® Rhododendrons love to be planted in partial sun and shade. The best part about these true Southern beauties is that they bloom the first year, and they are also cold tolerant and evergreen meaning they have interest all year long. Now is the absolute best time to plant them because they are loaded with buds just waiting to burst!
We took our Rhododendrons and planted them in a location that is exposed to the sun in the mornings and maintains a nice, cool shade throughout most of the afternoon. For best results, keep in mind they flourish in a PH of 5.5.
How to plant spring Rhododendron beds:
Position your plants in the shape of an arc
Dig a hole twice the size of your root ball
Place a few handfuls of your soil and bark mixture at the bottom of the hole
Remove the pot from the container and gently loosen the roots
Plant the root ball two inches above the ground
Fill in your hole with extra soil and bark mixture
Create a small outer ring around the base of the plant
Top dress with pine straw or mulch
This project may seem like a lot of work, but I assure you this plant is worth the effort. Rhododendrons make great additions to your home, inside and out. As soon as the blooms start filling your garden you can clip, snip and bring them inside. If this is your first “Rhod-e-O”, I guarantee it won’t be your last!