Azaleas are beautiful flowers that bloom in spring and last for several weeks. They are usually grown under trees as that is a preferred location for them. Azalea comes in many colors and sizes and have shallow roots.
It is absolutely essential to prunes these plants whenever required. Pruning comes under maintaining your plants and trees. Pruning is removing the deadwood, shaping (controlling or conditioning growth) and maintaining the health of the plant or tree. Pruning in simple terms is the removal of unwanted, dead, damaged and tissue of that can hamper the healthy growth of your plants and trees.
There are essentially four types of pruning: Thinning, Topping, Raising and Reduction.
Thinning is a drastic form of pruning and hence is requires to be done correctly. This is also a common form of pruning used for plants, flower plants and trees.
Topping is more severe. It involves removing of all branches of a tree to train the younger trees to promote their growth.
Raising is removing of lower branches of a tree so clears up the space for people and their needs. This is not practiced on plants.
Reduction, as the name suggests, reduces the size of a tree. This is done when it is important to maintain the height of a tree.
Despite many ways of pruning, azaleas must be pruned in the most traditional and natural manner as they are not meant for formal style of pruning. You may prune azaleas soon after they have bloomed in spring or in early summer. It is perfect to prune them when they are discoloring.
While trimming your azaleas plant, use pruning shears for cutting the branches individually and at the proper spot. Azaleas look best when minimally pruned as it helps them gain their natural form. You can remove long stray stems from the bottom as it helps the plant get sunlight and air wherever required and in adequate amount.
To add to the pruning, you can help the growth of the plant by pinching the terminal buds as it will increase branching and will continue for longer time. Avoid pinching if the growing season is still on and the plants is still setting buds for the next season.
Do remember that azaleas are toxic if consumed. Keep your children and pets away from this plant.