I purchased this Sangosai Azalea last summer and sat it on my bench. I like to wait a year before working on my trees so I am confident that they are healthy and ready to work on.
Sangosai has a very nice flower but mine seem to be very fragile this year. Maybe repotting will improve next years flowers.
The reason I liked this tree was it had a nice nebari developing.
What I don’t care for are the long straight branches.
So I simply removed all of the lower branches. You have to break an egg if you want to make an omelet. Azaleas will back bud very vigorously after hard pruning in early summer. If you prune hard any other time of year back budding will be poor.
The roots needed minimal pruning.
My Sangosai looks pretty unsightly at this stage but should see significant back budding begin in just a few weeks.
Here is a Satsuki Azalea I pruned hard last year that looked very similar to the Sangosai above. It is pretty healthy with lots of buds now. I will continue to prune all my Azaleas every summer to develop the desired shape.