Autumn Embers AzaleaRhododendron Encore 'Embers'
‘Encore’ azaleas are the result of many years of work by Robert Edward Lee of Louisiana. He started his work in the 1980’s, working out of his home with the goal of bringing the beauty of spring azaleas to other seasons.
By hybridizing traditional spring-flowering azaleas with a rare summer-blooming variety called Rhododendron oldhamii, Lee created an entirely new type of azalea – a multiple-flowering azalea, the ‘Encore’.
After they flower in the spring, these evergreen azaleas grow shoots until they start setting new buds, which then begin blooming in midsummer. The summer blooms are not as spectacular as the spring. The exact flowering times vary between the different varieties, all extend the azalea flowering season into the fall. When the weather gets cooler, the ‘Encore’ puts on one more display of color.
Use and Management
The growing requirements for growing ‘Encore’ azaleas are the same as any other azalea. They prefer filtered shade, protection form afternoon sun and slightly acidic, well-drained soil. Azaleas do not require much pruning. If need, prune after the spring flowering.
When planting, add organic material to the soil, such as peat moss or compost. The top of the root ball should be above the soil level, and after planting you should mulch to keep the plant moist. Since mulch decomposes, it should be reapplied annually to hold in moisture, prevent weed growth and insulate against extreme temperature.
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