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23/01/2014 at 23:28

So this is my first post on here, first of many i should imagine! 
I've been a first time homeowner for 7 months now, and its taken me this time to divert my attention away from the decorating inside to the two wonderful sized gardens at the front and rear of our home!

Loads of plants a few trees, many of which are staying, some are going, but almost all need pruning! 
I've always enjoyed pottering around gardens but now having my own is making me think further ahead then a couple of pot plants!

Veg boxes are going in in next few weeks!  Greenhouse is been cleaned out but one Plant is bugging me more than others, Great big evergreen shrub in the front, Its a security nightmare, blocking light and view of the front door from the street, The wife doesn't feel safe with it been so intruding, I'm inclined to agree, Problem is as with most plants, I'm unsure of names and how/when best to prune?!

Where and how is the best place to identify plants? I guess a book or website? is there somewhere I can upload a photo and people can help but a name to a plant?

Is there an app? if not there should be!

I'll post a pic here anyway in hope some of you kind folk can help! 

I'd be very grateful!

http://s4.gardenersworld.com/uploads/images/original/36463.jpg?width=276&height=350&mode=max

http://s4.gardenersworld.com/uploads/images/original/36464.jpg?width=276&height=350&mode=max

 

 

23/01/2014 at 23:48

...first of all I think you're very lucky in having such wonderfully acidic soil there to grow those big shrubs...

the photo is of a Rhododendron... it may be the wilder variety called 'ponticum' as I note left over flowers which are purple still on the plant here and there... it could also be a purple hybrid and not ponticum though.....   whatever... if you can hold on, this will be a wonderful sight to see this May/June.... I would wait until after it has flowered then... about end June.. and if you really don't like it.. then chop it down or get rid of it...   you can chop it right down if you want to keep it, and it will regrow again...

if you chop it about now, you will lose all the flower buds for this year... which I think would be a shame.. however it's up to you....

24/01/2014 at 00:00

I agree - your OH may change her mind once she sees the flowers and may only want it cutting back.  It's always best to wait a full year when you move to somewhere with an established garden so you can get to see the full range of plants. 

Folk here love identifying things from photo's and are very good at it so fire away!

24/01/2014 at 08:38

I agree it's a roddi.... May not look like much now but you wait they are spectacular..... You can cut the top off to bring it down a bit and it will fill in........http://www.finegardening.com/how-to/articles/three-ways-prune-rhododendrons.aspx..... Also try the RHS website. They flower on previous years wood so a hard prune may not produce flowers next year but the year after that it will be smothered......

24/01/2014 at 08:43

Welcome to the forum Luke.  

24/01/2014 at 11:56

Thanks for identifying the Rhododendron for me! 
I must admit I remember the flowers when we viewed the house/moved in May/June, 
It does produce some amazing flowers but I have to put the security of the house over flowers this year plus allow though the plant is good condition, the actual shape is rather discombobulated!

When you say I can cut it right back/Hard Prune,
How far would that be?

Bare in mind the plant is around 6-7' tall!  I read that Feburary/March is the best time to hard prune.

Thank you each one of you for your help and advice I'm sure I'll be posting some more photos soon!

24/01/2014 at 13:20

Welcome Luke.

25/01/2014 at 09:18

Hi Luke, welcome!

We moved into our garden 13 years ago - complete novices, and like you had no idea about how to identify anything.  I got hold of three of the 'Expert' series of gardening books - the Flower Expert, the Tree and Shrub Expert, and the Bulb Expert;  and they were absolutely brilliant.  At a glance they help you identify everything, and when to prune etc.  I still use them every year to remind me what to do with everything and when.

Nowadays I'd say this forum is your best source of advice - everyone is very keen to help!  But nothing quite takes the place of wandering around the garden with the book open, playing 'spot the plant'.  I'd still recommend the books to go alongside the forum.

You're going to have great fun!

Rosie

25/01/2014 at 19:10

£2.81 via Amazon, Purchased! Many Thanks Rosie31!

05/02/2014 at 19:47

Enjoy!

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