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Plant Of The Month - April

MARVIN'S GARDEN CLUB
Azaleas

Rhodoendron

Azaleas are among the most popular plants in the South. The two main azalea groups, evergreen and deciduous, can be found in nearly every part of North America, from the frosty Canadian plains to tropical Florida. The clusters of flowers are tubular-, funnel-, or bell-shaped—and often fragrant as well as showy in late spring. With hundreds of varieties, there are azaleas for just about every place. Though most plants flower in the spring, there are also summer-blooming varieties that add color and charm to any garden.

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Fun Facts:

  • Azaleas are actually a type of Rhododendron, and a part of the much larger heath family (Ericaceae). The word azalea comes from the Greek word meaning dry.

  • Azaleas are the national flower of Nepal.

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​​The best time to plant azaleas is in late spring or early fall. Evergreen azaleas do well in partial shade with some wind protection. Deciduous varieties flower more profusely in full sun.

  • Provide well-drained, humus-rich soil that is slightly acidic (pH 4.5–6).

  • Mulch well. Shallow-rooted, azaleas tend to dry out quickly if not mulched. A mulch of oak leaf mold, pine needles, or aged oak, pine, or hemlock sawdust will keep soil acidic and moist. 

  • Fertilizer isn’t needed. The decaying mulch will provide all of the nutrients that azaleas need.

  • Seldom bothered by insects and diseases, azaleas require little care once established, except for watering during dry times.

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