Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Zones 6 Winter Hardy Encore Azaleas™

'Autumn Ruby' Encore azalea in April 2009
Photo credit: Dr. Alan Windham, Extension Plant Pathologist, University of Tennessee

Encore Azaleas™ bloom twice: in the spring and from late summer into the fall season.
Ten varieties consistently exhibited cold hardiness throughout zones 6-a and 6-b: Autumn Amethyst, Autumn Carnation, Autumn Cheer, Autumn Lilac, Autumn Royalty, Autumn Ruby, Autumn Sangria, Autumn Sundance, Autumn Sunset, and Autumn Twist.

In Zone 6-b, nine additional varieties also consistently exhibited exceptional cold hardiness: Autumn Bravo, Autumn Carnival, Autumn Debutante, Autumn Embers , Autumn Empress , Autumn Monarch, Autumn Princess, Autumn Rouge, and Autumn Sweetheart.

For best results in plant zones 6-b and colder, gardeners should plant in the spring or early summer. In Zones 7-9, Encore Azaleas benefit from fall and late summer planting schedules. Their multi-season blooms make them ideal for container gardens.

Encore azaleas™ begin blooming each spring like traditional azaleas. These evergreen azaleas enjoy more sun than traditional azaleas. Encore Azaleas were bred by Robert E. “Buddy” Lee of Independence, Louisiana and are available at many independent garden centers.

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