In the more than 15 years that Encore Azaleas have been tested in gardens and nurseries across the Southeast, they have proven to be a low-maintenance solution for multi-season landscape color. Anecdotal evidence and a recent university study also suggest they are more sun-tolerant, cold hardy and versatile than previously expected.
More Sun Tolerant
Unlike traditional azaleas, Encore Azaleas can tolerate full sun. In fact, 4-6 hours of direct sunlight or high, flitered shade will ensure optimal blooming and growth. Some shade during the afternoon heat is encouraged.
In a three-year cold hardiness study undertaken by Dr. Mark Windham and the University of Tennessee, 19 varieties of Encore Azaleas trialed in Zone 6 demonstrated positive results. Now 22 varieties are known to be cold-hardy to zone 6.
The only patented brand of azalea to bloom in spring, summer and fall, Encore Azaleas are available in 29 varieties.
Five varieties (Autumn Amethyst™, Autumn Cheer™, Autumn Royalty™, and Autumn Ruby™ and Autumn Twist™) consistently exhibited solid cold hardiness throughout Zone 6A.
Autumn Sangria and Autumn Sweetheart showed success in protected locations in Zone 6A. In Zone 6B, 18 varieties consistently exhibited solid cold hardiness: Autumn Amethyst™, Autumn Angel™, Autumn Carnation™, Autumn Carnival™, Autumn Cheer™, Autumn Chiffon™, Autumn Debutante™, Autumn Embers™, Autumn Empress™, Autumn Monarch™, Autumn Princess™, Autumn Rouge™, Autumn Royalty™, Autumn Ruby™, Autumn Sangria™, Autumn Sunset™, Autumn Sweetheart™, Autumn Twist™ (Autumn Belle™, Autumn Moonlight™, Autumn Sundance™ were not trialed).
For best results in Zones 6B and colder, gardeners should plant in spring or early summer. In zones 7-9, Encore Azaleas also benefit from fall and late summer planting schedules.
Great for Container Gardening
Encore Azaleas may need special care in zones colder than 6A, but their multi-season blooming capability makes them ideal for container gardens. As a base plant in a container garden, Encore Azaleas can be paired with seasonal favorites, and moved inside when winter freezes threaten.
For more information, high-resolution images, or interview opportunities, please contact Encore Azalea brand management, or visit www.encoreazalea.com. Robert Lee, developer and inventor of Encore Azalea®, and Dr. Mark Windham, University of Tennessee, are available for interviews.