bflocat
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Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2008 5:23 pm
Location: Western New York

Help for an azalea?

We have what I think is an azalea that has beautiful flowers, but is unruly and has a large bare spot right in the main part. Is there any way to coax new growth in that bare area? I really know nothing about azaleas, but I'd love to bring this one back to health and fullness.

Here's a picture of it:

[img]https://i287.photobucket.com/albums/ll160/bflocat/CIMG0100.jpg[/img]

Thanks!

brubel
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Joined: Fri Apr 25, 2008 12:17 am
Location: MD

Help for an azalea?

It doesn't look that bad to me;I'd worry more if it weren't blooming. Looks like an azalea.

My azaleas were a little thinner and less leafy so I used some azalea fertilizer on them. I'd suggest buying some and following the directions.

Also do a soil test for PH and make sure the soil is acidic enough.

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JPlovesflowers
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Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 2:36 am
Location: Northwest Arkansas

Azaleas

I agree with brubel, it does look like and azalea. Although it is flowering, which is a good sign, I would look close at the leaves once it quits flowering. I have some beautiful shrubs that are in bloom and their foliage is just awful. I found out my soil pH was alkaline and have been working on trying to get it straight. I had a real problem with lace bugs at one time, they are tiny bugs that get under the leaves of the azalea and the leaves start to look lacy on top, you will want to check for those. Ladybugs will eat the lace bugs, or you can get the Bayer systemic insecticide to get rid of them. As for the whole in the middle, if there are dead-looking branches in there, you will want to check to make sure they're really dead before trimming out, I found several on my bushes that I thought were dead and they are still alive, just bare. The bush will start to fill out on it's own once it finishes blooming. If you want to trim it, it will become more bushy and full, and the time to do it is right after it blooms. I've always loved the natural shape, and so have only trimmed mine to remove disease and dead growth. I believe the time to fertilize azaleas is right after they finish blooming too. Holly-Tone has a great reputation as an azalea fertilizer, it also provides helpful growing tips for azaleas and rhododendrons. https://www.espoma.com/content.aspx?type=p&id=22&intCategoryID=4
Good luck, although azaleas tend to be a bit persnickety, they are wonderful when they're blooming! :D
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to plant and a time to uproot. Eccl 3:1&2b

Tickie
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Joined: Wed May 21, 2008 8:47 pm
Location: Maryland

Azalea Care

I've had the same problems with my azaleas this year--they bloomed, but no leaves like the year before, and the few leaves I had were yellowish and sickly. I need to get the pH tested, and I will but I realized the soil was so poor (new construction) so I made my azaleas a little cocktail of holly tone and a high quality potting soil and mixed it in a bucket to prevent the too much holly tone mistake. I worked the mixture around the root line and it's been two weeks and healthy green leaves are beginning to appear. Today I also added in some leafgro we had delivered for another project. Like someone else said I noticed the leaves looked like the lace bugs were working on the shrubs and I had tiny black dots on the underside of the leaves so I bought Bayer insecticide and gave them a good spray. So far only the pink fishers (planted last year) are sickly looking. The Encores look great.

Cheers, Tickie 8)
Tickie Young

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JPlovesflowers
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Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 2:36 am
Location: Northwest Arkansas

Azaleas

You may want to look at your varieties as well. I have not had a chance to grow Encores yet. They were not as readily available when we planted the last ones that we have. There are specific varieties created for colder areas, I noticed that you are in Maryland. We are in 6b here, and I was in 7 in Virginia, and that little difference made a huge difference in the way my azaleas responded over the winter. I have found that soil acidity, lace bugs and lack of water seem to have the worst effect of anything on azaleas...they say they don't like wet feet, but they do need regular moisture and the best blooms are usually seen after the wettest winters. Good luck! :D
JP
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to plant and a time to uproot. Eccl 3:1&2b

bflocat
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Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2008 5:23 pm
Location: Western New York

The blooms were gorgeous - really vibrant and covering the whole bush (that photo was taken very early on in its bloom). Now some green leaves have filled in, but that bare spot remains. There was some dead wood in that area that I pruned out, and I trimmed back the branches a bit, because they were getting lanky and growing into our walkway. I've also added Holly Tone to the soil, and placed mulch around the bed. Hopefully, new growth will fill in that area, because right now it looks pretty funny!
Thanks for your help!!

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JPlovesflowers
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Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 2:36 am
Location: Northwest Arkansas

Oops

Oops! I think I responded to Tickie about your original post. Anyway, mine are doing much better. We've had lots of rain and they seem to be happier, I also added sulphur to amend the soil and make it more acidic and am going to add holly tone as soon as I get a few minutes. I learned in all of my research that soil east of the Mississippi is generally acidic, while soil west of the Mississippi is generally alkaline....who knew? Certainly not me. I wish you much success, keep me posted on how it goes.
JP
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to plant and a time to uproot. Eccl 3:1&2b

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