Rose of Sharon in trouble

tenchainsJune 12, 2014

I transplanted a huge Rose of Sharon from the front to the backyard two years ago. After one year it did not bloom alot of flowers like it had. Year two a bit less flower blooms maybe 5 flowers on a 10 foot shrub. This year it barely has any leaves and now I am officially worried. I want to dig it up and put more dirt around it. Turn the shrub. And use better dirt. It has so few leaves I am scared to kill it all the way. I could use some advice. Here is the plant. In my neighborhood most Rose of Sharons have most of their leaves now. Ours has very few. Again I'd like to raise it more.

This post was edited by tenchains on Thu, Jun 12, 14 at 14:12

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tenchains

This is the shrub

    Bookmark   June 12, 2014 at 2:10PM
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tenchains

The lil bit of leaves

    Bookmark   June 12, 2014 at 2:13PM
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gardenper(8)

Seems like it is not dead, so that's good. Rose of Sharon trees/shrubs can handle heavy pruning. I would definitely recommend that for your bush, as I can see that if it did actually fill out fully with leaves, it would be quite crowded.

I'm concerned that the new growth seems to be more prevalent near the bottom and not at constant sections throughout the branch(es). That might be a good candidate for pruning, whenever new growth is not see on the top parts of a branch (you can also check if those branches are indeed still alive by scratching it lightly and check if you see greenery beneath)

At the same time, you could give nutrients to the soil around the tree. You probably moved it from a spot that was getting continuous nutrient renewal to a spot that it wasn't, so each subsequent year, you are getting less and less bounty.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2014 at 2:25PM
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tenchains

I will prune it. Last season I added holly tone. I still think maybe I should uproot it and buy new bags of topsoil and make the ground around it more robust.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2014 at 5:05PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

This year it barely has any leaves and now I am officially worried.

==>>> what were you previously ... unofficially worried.. lol ...

its most likely dead.. above the top most green shoot ... so cut all that off ... it may or may not thrive ...

but one thing for sure.. it will never look like it did before ... so get that out of your mind ...

during the next 3 to 5 years.. you will shape it into some new form ....

frankly ... i would cut it to the ground... kill the stump ... and if i insisted on a ROS ... invest $20 bucks on a new one ... and plant it a few feet away ... where i could dig a hole ....

thought this one may recover over the next 5 years.. a new healthy one.. might out grow it ten fold.. properly planted and all ... your choice ...

i would have never worked as hard as you did moving such a large plant .. two thumbs up for that effort ...

ken

ps: any idea.. how it ended up leaning??? .... is it growing away from some large tree we cant see????

    Bookmark   June 13, 2014 at 8:08PM
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whaas_5a(5A SE WI)

Looks like its planted way too deep.

If anything, I would dig it up and ensure its at the proper depth and then cut it way back, shaping it in the process so every stub isn't the same length.

Don't even think about getting a bag of top soil. Use the native soil. Someone else might be more willing to explain why if you're interested.

Otherwise I'm with Ken and would cut my loses and plant a new one if I had to absolutely have a RoS.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2014 at 9:42PM
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tenchains

Hey guys thanks. It is leaning only because it is so massive, and I moved and planted it by myself. I had nobody to help me stake it. My girlfriend liked it so I tried to make it work. I agree that it has been planted too deep. There are no trees around it. I wonder if I should try to dig it up...plant it much less deep, and see if there is a change from there before I destroy it. I will not use top soil. Thank you for your help....

    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 9:28PM
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farmboy1(5)

It is probably doing it's best to grow with the compromised root system that it now has after being moved. Best thing to do would be as the others say, prune of any dead wood, maybe straighten it out while you can. Then once you have it where you want it, water it well and put a nice, thick mulch ring around it to help keep the roots cool and damp. And make sure you give it plenty of water on a regular basis if Mother Nature doesn't provide any rain.

If it sits in an area where it gets lots of hot afternoon sun, I'd be tempted to wrap some burlap cloth around the upper sections so the leaves don't get scorched.

Worked for me....I moved 5 similarly large ROS in the summer of 2012, year of the drought. They all survived.

Keep us posted,

vince

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 11:54AM
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cadillactaste

I've always heard you can't kill a Rose of Sharon...but what you described sounds like a stressed move. Possibly as mentioned planted to deep. Now...messing with a stress shrubs roots when it's struggling to survive. Unsure about that.

I would also like to mention...my neighbor had one with severe dieback from this past harsh winter. And lost a complete lovely shrub beside it as well. I had tips die back this winter...but didn't lose the overall shape mine had. Sickens me...seeing his lovely large shrub with no leaves.

But wanted to toss that out as well...a stressed tree it might be...but, your location and winter may have added to the mix. Like a double whammy. You have growth...I would tend to say...prune off what is not showing life. So the tree nourishes what life it has. And not mess with it's rootball.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 7:53AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

My girlfriend liked it so I tried to make it work. I agree that it has been planted too deep. There are no trees around it. I wonder if I should try to dig it up...plant it much less deep,

==>>> really????

its a $15 plant.. get a new one.. and prune it into this shape ... in three years.. a 3 foot new plant.. will outgrow this struggling monster ...

and being stressed within an inch of its life .... i doubt redigging it.. and stressing it more.. is going to get you very far.. buy that time.. just burn it.. and plant the young healthy plant in the hole.. [thought this isnt really planting time for trees] ...

Cadillac.. you can barely kill an established ROS ... that has nothing to do with digging out a 10 to 15 foot tree.. and dragging it across the lawn ... that is trying real hard to kill it.. lol.. and it didnt ...

ken

    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 8:05AM
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tenchains

Here it is after I cut it way back

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 5:18PM
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tenchains

Here I tried to show how deep it is. I know it's too deep. I had to plant it like that to get it to stand.

    Bookmark   June 19, 2014 at 5:20PM
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tenchains

Here it is after cutting it way back

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 9:44PM
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