Q What is rhododendron bud blast?
A Rhododendron bud blast is a fungal disease that causes buds to turn brown and die. They then turn a silvery grey colour and become covered in black bristles. Those buds which are affected will fail to open and flower but the problem usually only affects a few of the buds so overall the plant will still bloom well.
Caption: Buds affected by rhododendron bud blast can be picked off by hand
Q What can I do about it?
A There are no sprays that you can use to control the problem so try to remove the infected buds by hand. It will not only reduce the amount of fungal spores that could spread the disease, but it will also tidy up the appearance of the plant.