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Can i follow this too, as I'm about to do the same to mine too.
Will it be OK to trim the low branches off, especially the one to the left? And will this encourage more vertical growth / height? Looking online it seems it should grow to 4-6ft.
Or does anyone know if it is a characteristic of some rhodos to have this low growth habit?
Don't for God's sake cut it back. Rhodos cannot stand any sort of pruning, except of obviously dead lower branches. You will either kill it or stop it flowering for years. I don't know this particular variety but it may well be a naturally prostrate form, in which case it will never grow very tall. The name " Bambino" ie little baby suggests this. Good luck.
I beg to differ - rhodos can grow like weeds here and if they're grown as an informal hedge they need regular pruning once established - cut hard back very few years, or trimmed every year to keep them at an ideal height. What they don't like is being in a pot so I think if you've now got it settled in the ground it will gradually start to thrive MrsG, but it may take a while. Give it plenty of tlc, a regular feed of your choice and a mulch and keep it free of competition from other plants. If it's in a sunnyish site don't let it get dried out - rainwater if yours isn't ideal . It should be at it's full height if it's that age. I've already cut back the one I inherited a year ago (near the base) and it's grown a lot already, but I have the perfect conditions here for it. It's getting a big haircut later on
I just had another thought while at work MrsG. If the rhodie was in pots for all that time it may be very, very pot bound. Did you tease the roots out a bit when you planted into the ground? They get to a point where they don't settle into the surrounding soil and just keep going in circles and still don't grow on properly. It might be worth lifting it and taking a look. If they're still congested give them a bit of loosening up and then replant with plenty of good soil and compost and a feed, water and mulch
Thanks Fairy, I had thought of this (something on tv recently). I can't say I remember much about planting it apart from ericaceous soil.
It may well be a prostrate form Inglezinho but still think it should have put on some height. The name Bambino was because it was given to a children's hospital (Seattle I think).
I've read a bit more and still find opposing views on pruning, most will recover losing flowers for a year or two. Some 'smooth barked' ones may not recover.
I think I will lift it and tease at the roots as Fairy said, then the lower branches still have some flexibility in them so I am going to try staking it to train it more upright.
Thanks Berkley, saw your thread which reminded me I wanted to do something with mine.
Hi Mike, hope you are well, didn't understand your original post 'read me' couldn't find anything to read