My Ruby Loropetalum Only Produces a Few Leaves HELP!

I planted a Ruby Loropetalum here in Hinesville, Georgia (zone 8) and all the leave fell off. For the past 2 years, only a few leaves appear on the branches and then once in a while we get pretty pinkish flowers. But, they do not last long and then we just have the few leaves until about December. Why do I get few leaves and blossoms on my Loropetalum bush? I fertilize it about every three months but to no avail...what am I doing wrong? Sigh...

Submitted by ropamfrazier

It sounds as though your loropetalum suffered transplant shock, and has never recovered. Was it lack of water that caused the leaves to drop off soon after planting? Newly planted shrubs often need to be watered several times per week because their roots have not spread beyond the rootball of the container in which they were growing. You can gradually increase the time between waterings, but for the first couple of years the plant will need extra attention to watering.

After a plant has been severely stressed like this, it can take a long time to recover. Avoid fertilizing until it puts out healthy growth on its own. It's also possible that the shrub's roots haven't grown much beyond the original container. if the soil (heavy clay, for example) surrounding the plant is drastically different from the soil that was in the container, the roots may not grow out of the original rootball. Amending the entire area with compost to loosen the clay and promote aeration could help.

Answered by DSchrock
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Oops! I meant by planting the hose in the ground. Then, I watered the mulch around it as well. Did I help it or do more damage to it?
Submitted by ropamfrazier
Thanks DSchrock, I've added some cow compost and peat moss. I also cut off the dead hanging branches that had snapped and was hanging on by a strand. Then, I watered it deeply by moving some earth and planting the hole in the ground. I hope that I didn't stress it even more:-(
Submitted by ropamfrazier