Encore Azalea’s Sunny Disposition: Exposure Guide

Learn how to properly locate your Encore Azaleas, so you will enjoy maximum performance and bloom production.

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Download our printable guide to sun exposure for Encore® Azaleas.

Encore Azalea has become the azalea to which all others are compared. After all, they are not only incredibly beautiful, but they repeat bloom. Imagine a glorious spring bloom of your favorite colors that, because of careful breeding and selection, resumes again and again… spring, summer, and fall. So, as you are developing your landscape – whether starting with a blank slate or making improvements ­– you should consider adding Encore Azaleas.

Follow these tips to find the perfect location and sunlight exposure in your landscape.

More (Morning) Sun = More Blooms

Your new Encore Azaleas want to bloom and bloom ­– and it’s just the right amount of sunlight (4 to 6 hours), which will keep those stunning blossoms in production through fall. Ideally, you want morning sun and afternoon shade protection. Consider also high shifting or filtered light, where dappled sun shines through high, thin branches like pine trees. As the earth moves during the day, sunlight comes in and out, giving Encore Azaleas an accumulation of light perfect for leaf growth to occur, followed by those colorful flowers.

On the other hand, dense shade doesn’t allow Encore Azaleas to achieve their true potential. Blooms will be diminished, and the plant can become somewhat leggy as it reaches for more light.

Consult Your Compass

The direction your home faces may also help you decide the best spot for your Encore Azaleas:

  • South-facing landscapes generally are hot and receive more intense sun, so look for elements in the landscape that will offer your Encore Azaleas afternoon shade protection.
  • North-facing landscapes are shadier and somewhat colder so make sure the morning sun will reach your Encore Azaleas if planting on this side.
  • West-facing gardens tend to be the hottest and are often harsh and windy, so plant where the home or other hardscaping elements can shield from the wind and heat.
  • East-facing landscapes are gentler, naturally offering afternoon protection in the shadow of your home, and may be perfect for plants needing partial sun.

Water Works Wonders

The good news is Encore Azaleas are tough and adaptable to much sunnier locations than you might otherwise consider, as long as needed moisture is available. Water your Encore Azaleas deeply and regularly the first year, and then they can be quite drought tolerant. Pay attention to planting location here, too: take precautions to prevent excessive drought or heat-related issues by monitoring soil moisture carefully on plants under the full sun near west-facing walls, driveways, and sidewalks.

Make Your Bed

Instead of sticking Encore Azaleas into a plot of tight-compacted clay, a planting area of fertile, organic, well-draining soil gives the best foundation to handle any light conditions. The incorporation of compost and organic matter improves tight, heavy soil, allowing for best drainage. Add a layer of mulch after planting and again each year. Azaleas keep their roots near the soil surface, and this annual decomposition of mulch and organic matter will maintain a good environment for new roots and assist with moisture retention.

Thirty-three varieties of Encore Azaleas open the door to a world of landscape and container opportunities with a dazzling array of colors, plant sizes and even flower forms. And that world is truly wide open to you … even if your yard is sunny! So, now is the time to plant Encore Azaleas!

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