Magical feelings abound when you are in the middle of your garden, and fancy sensations are felt amidst the flowers in bloom. Enjoy every moment, smell the scent, enjoy the colors and connect with nature. Surely it gives a breathtaking sight of paradise on earth.
Springtime is the bloom time of many flowers; some stand barely un-noticed, while there are eye-catching species that stand out among the rest. Among these is the Azalea.
Azalea is a bell-shaped flower that explodes from its shrub; these beautiful early spring flowers belonging to the Rhododendron family are always present in almost every bouquet arrangement, careful though; Azaleas’ blooms are poisonous to animals and children.
Azalea is hybridized over time and now has more than ten thousand varieties in various sizes, colors, and flower shapes. Azaleas can be grown indoors or outdoors. From the thousand varieties of Azalea, allow yourself to know the most common ones; appreciate each of their characters and each of their beauty:
White Evergreen Azalea
This variety needs more shade than any other, which grows most often in the eastern United States. This variety has a rounded white flower with light green foliage and grows only about one to two feet tall, and they like to be densely planted together in bunches and mass.
Pink Azalea can thrive in extremely cold climates. The plant is a shrub standing about six to twelve feet with branches that spread horizontally. It has a funnel-shaped pink or white flower that occurs in large clusters. This flower attracts butterflies and hummingbirds because of its fragrance; it has many branches thus best planted in a wide garden.
Lemon Lights Azalea
This type of Azalea belongs to the Northern Lights series that radiates in bright lemon yellow color. The Northern lights are an astronomical phenomenon that appears like a curtain of dancing colored lights; thus, the color of a lemon lights Azalea.
This variety reaches up to four feet high and can withstand occasional drought and extremely cold temperatures. It’s a trumpet-shaped flower with narrow and open-facing petals that stay strong while losing its foliage during winter. Proper care is needed to grow this species.
Care Guide and Growing Tips
Each flower has its own story, secrets, and tale to tell. The life of a flower is worth your attention, as with the life of humans. Aside from the spectacle bloom they display, their existence gives beauty and cure to some diseases. But if they get the disease themselves, how would they be cared for? Follow this care guide for a beautiful bloom:
Whether your Azalea is planted indoor or outdoor, the care guide is the same. The very generic care tip is to give them some love, talk to them. This practice dates back to 1848 from German professor Gustav Fechner when he published the book Nanna (Soul of life), which explains how plants respond to sound and cheerfully react to a stimulus in the environment.
The soil is the source of nutrients for the plants to grow; it holds the plants’ roots that absorb water for nutrition and hydration. Azaleas are an acidic plant that needs an acidic soil with a pH of 4.0 to 5.5. A pH value tells you the acidity and basicity of a solution, in this case, the soil.
Azaleas thrive best in soil rich in organic matter; the best source is your compost soil at home. Give them moist and well-drained soil; all these will ensure enough nutrients to be distributed to other parts of the plant.
Avoid over-watering the plant; it might result in water stress of the roots but never dry them out as well. Azalea’s roots are shallow, staying only up to 4-6 inches of the soil; thus, watering them should be done slowly and directly into the root zone using a drip irrigation system. Avoid watering them on the leaves as water left on the leaves make them susceptible to fungal diseases.
Most varieties can tolerate direct sun but not too hot, best, a filtered light. Please place it in a location with morning sunlight and shades in the afternoon. Your proper judgment is needed, especially if you live in a location with less sunlight.
To have healthy foliage and a beautiful bloom, provide Azaleas with the basic nutrients they need: nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Begin fertilizing them a month after planting with additional micronutrients such as iron, manganese, and zinc. Sulfur is also added to keep the pH of the soil. You can get these nutrients from commercial fertilizers, or you can use compost.
Azaleas are spring bloom flowers that grow on shrubs. There are thousands of varieties with different lovely colors that you can propagate. To give you lush greens and blooms, always know the care guide, the do’s and don’ts in planting. Be mindful that, like humans, Azaleas are plants that need care and love as well.