Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Thursday - August 27, 2009

From: St. Louis, MO
Region: Midwest
Topic: Propagation, Transplants
Title: Transplanting azalea sprouts in St Louis MO
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have an azalea bush that I cut back severely 2 years ago and unwittingly started 3 or 4 new bushes when some limbs grew back along the ground and created their own roots. I'd like to separate them from the mother bush and transplant them but I'm not sure of the best method or timing. They are all hardy.. at least 18 inches long and 2 of them have several offshoots of their own. Can I do it now or wait until the spring? Should I cut them from the mother bush and leave their roots intact for a while before uprooting them? Thank you!

ANSWER:

There are 16 plants that are members of the Ericaceae (Heath) family and with the common name of "azalea" in our Native Plant Database. Only one of these, Rhododendron albiflorum (Cascade azalea), is native to Missouri. It really doesn't matter, as we doubt you have a native azalea but more likely a hybrid or an import. Ordinarily, The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center only deals with questions involving plants native to North America as well as to the area in which they are being grown, but since we don't know what you have, and the help would apply to a native as well as a non-native, we'll see what we can find for you.

What we think you have done, apparently inadvertently, is to layer your azalea in order to create more plants. This article, How Stuff Works How to Cut and Layer Plants, specifically mentions azaleas and gives instructions for working with the layered plants. We would suggest that you wait until Fall to do the actual moving of the new plants, and be sure and follow the instructions on preparation of the hole and soil. We also found a website from your own state, University of Missouri Extension Growing Azaleas and Rhododendrons that should give you more useful information. 


Rhododendron albiflorum

 


 

More Propagation Questions

Possibility of growing Buckleys yucca in South Carolina
February 03, 2008 - I live in Lexington, SC. I am wondering if I can grow Buckley's yucca (yucca constricta) here and if so, where can I purchase the seeds or plants? I am from Texas and we are trying to create a "we...
view the full question and answer

Growing butterfly weed as a girl scout project
July 30, 2012 - We have a group of girl scouts who want to sell 'crafts' at a farmers market. I am wanting to steer the moms and girls in a different direction. I was wondering if you think that butterfly weed woul...
view the full question and answer

Division of impatiens grown in a pot
December 08, 2007 - I have an impatient and it is growing out of the pot. I was wondering if it were possible to divide it somehow and have two medium size plants.
view the full question and answer

Bluebonnets in Hampton VA?
July 12, 2014 - I gave my mom Blue Bonnet seeds for her yard in Hampton VA. She is on a mission to have no lawn and loves flowers. The seeds say to plant in Texas August-November. But, when should she plant them i...
view the full question and answer

Propagation of possumhaw from Austin
May 22, 2014 - I planted a possumhaw holly plant about 3 months ago and am really excited to watch it grow from its current 3-foot height. It is starting to berry right now. My question is about those berries: (Cle...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.