Caring For Azaleas
Amazing Azaleas: Care and Planting Tips
Azaleas are beautiful shrubs that are loved by many gardeners and homeowners in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. These shrubs are native to East Asia and are known for their vibrant flowers that bloom in shades of pink, red, white, and purple. However, to keep your azaleas looking their best, it is important to give them proper care. Here are some tips to help you keep your azaleas healthy and thriving.
Get To Know Azaleas
- Evergreen shrub with a mounding, rounded habit.
- Mature height can range from 2'-8', depending on variety.
- Flowers typically bloom in the spring, although timing can vary by variety. Encore® Azalea and Bloom-A-Thon® varieties are known for their multi-season, prolific blooms.
- Prefers morning sun with some afternoon shade.
- Available in many different colors including white, pink, salmon, purple, and red.
- Plant in containers, borders, shady beds or woodland gardens, or as privacy hedge or foundation planting.
- Deer resistant.
Caring For Your Azalea
- Light: Prefers filtered shade to morning sun in our area.
- Soil: Requires well-drained, slightly acidic soil (pH of 5 or 6) with additional organic matter such as peat, compost, and leaves.
- Water: Azaleas require regular watering, especially during dry spells. It is best to water deeply and thoroughly once a week to ensure that the soil is consistently moist. Avoid overwatering as this can lead to root rot.
- When to Plant: Plant azaleas in late winter, early spring, or in fall. Give each plant good soil for new roots by digging a wide hole—only as deep as the rootball—and partially filling the hole with Espoma Organic Bio-tone® Starter Plus.
- Feeding: Fertilizing with organic fertilizer is best. Organic fertilizers provide a slow release of nutrients. Espoma Organic Holly-tone® takes the guesswork out of feeding. It is specially blended for overall growth, green foliage, and bloom production of acid-loving plants. And, you guessed it...you can use it on camellias and hollies as well.
- Pruning: Pruning isn't necessary, but can be used to control height. Pruning or pinching back young azalea plants helps to promote bushy growth and is best after bloom season.
By following these care tips, you can ensure that your azaleas remain healthy and beautiful for many years to come. Whether you are an experienced gardener or just starting out, azaleas are a wonderful addition to your garden. Happy gardening!