May 05, When pruning azaleas, you don’t need to worry about cutting back to a connecting branch. Azaleas will grow new branches from right below wherever you cut. Pruning to Rejuvenate.
If you are pruning an azalea in order to rejuvenate the plant because it’s become spindly or sparse, locate three to five of the largest branches on the azalea bush. An azalea can become overgrown and leggy, and although rejuvenating pruning is beneficial, drastic measures, such as cutting the shrub down to 6 inches above the ground, can kill it. If new growth emerges from the 6-inch-tall branch, then you'll know the azalea can withstand severe cutting back. Jun 03, Unlike other flowering plants, such as the hydrangea, azaleas don’t need yearly cutting back.
(See my full post on Why and How to Prune Hydrangeas.) But could my plants benefit from being completely cut down? If you need to cut it back this extremely, only cut it by a third of its height each year until you reach the desired size.
Tip When using a heading cut, the bud that remains will grow in the direction it's pointing. Can You Cut Back Azaleas To The Ground? We do not recommend ever cutting an azalea shorter than 12 inches tall.
If you cut back the plant all the way to the ground, you risk the plant becoming weakened by poor nutrition or disease and die.