The deer chewed most of the leaves off 3 of 5 of my rhodies this past winter. Are they a lost cause or is there something I can do to promote new leaf growth?
You will have to wait until you see if new sprouts form. Rhododendrons have adventitious buds, buds under the bark that open when something like this happens. I would bet that if they were healthy they will snap back. They will need protection next winter. I use deer netting to protect my rhododendrons from deer in the winter. Give them until mid to late June to start coming back. Then you can cut back the dead wood.
Didn't think I needed the netting based on the last 7 years with no problems. But this past winter when we received 2 1/2' of snow I guess the deer had nothing else to eat. Rhodies were healthy going into winter, so I guess I'll just wait and see.
Thanks for the reply!