Azalea Bed Preparation
Azalea bed preparation
QUESTION: When should Encore azaleas be fertilized and with what? Since they bloom continuously, should there be a modification to the usual azalea feeding schedule? C.M., Arlington
ANSWER: In an organic program, we fertilize all plants basically at the same time because we are feeding the soil, not force-feeding the plants. And that should make your life easier. The normal times to fertilize in my Basic Organic Program are late winter (now), early summer (June) and fall (October).
QUESTION: I have more than 50 Encore azaleas that are about 3 or 4 feet tall. Six of them have yellowing new leaves, and one has new leaves that are white. Is the problem a lack of iron? What should I do? E.B., Coppell
ANSWER: I hope the beds were prepared correctly when the azaleas were planted. Azaleas should be planted in 100 percent (or close to it) organic material — such as a mixture of compost, cedar flakes and other amendments — with little to no garden soil. If your azaleas were not planted this way, they should be lifted and replanted correctly. Azaleas also need excellent drainage. If the soil and drainage are good, add greensand, dry molasses and products that contain mycorrhizal fungi. All of these products will have application information on the packages.