You may think of azaleas as those big flowering shrubs that produce bright, beautiful blooms in early spring. But did you know that you can grow potted azaleas as houseplants too? They do great as potted plants and can also thrive inside and outside your lace.
There are many types of azaleas, also known as rhododendrons. Some are evergreen azaleas, while other azalea varieties are deciduous, meaning they turn colors in autumn. Here are some critical azalea care tips you should know to ensure that your plant keeps producing beautiful flower buds year after year.
How Do you Take Care of Potted Azaleas?
Azaleas are acid-loving plants, so this means that they prefer to grow in pots that have a soil pH between 5 and 6. Look for potting soil mixes that contain acidic soil or pine bark. Avoid any products that are for alkaline plants.
Their roots like to stay cool and moist, so you may wish to place a layer of organic mulch on top of the soil after its first watering. Put your azalea in a large pot with good drainage. This large pot will give the roots plenty of room to grow and avoid the risk of forming a root ball. It will also decrease the risk of root rot and disease.
How Much Water do they Need?
Monitor the soil and water for your plant whenever the soil feels dry to the touch. If you know that your tap water is alkaline, you may wish to use rainwater or another water source instead. Azaleas can dry out quickly, so they may need frequent watering to keep the soil moist, especially during hot and dry weather. Don’t place your pot near a radiator or heating vent! And never let the soil dry out completely.
How Much Sun Does an Azalea Need?
Azaleas like to grow in bright but shady areas. They need about four hours of sunlight each day. Outdoors, azalea plants thrive in areas that get morning sun and afternoon shade. Their favorite place to grow is underneath tall trees, where they get filtered sunlight during the day.
Indoors, place your azalea in a bright room or enclosed porch. Rooms that get morning sun and afternoon shade are best. Avoid placing your plant in front of any windows that get full sun all day long.
Whether growing your plant indoors or outdoors, be sure not to place it in direct sun or full shade. Azaleas do not do well in temperatures over 85 degrees Fahrenheit. They do best at temperatures ranging between 60 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit or around room temperature.
How Do you Keep Azaleas Blooming?
Your plant will need good plant food and good sunlight to maintain beautiful azalea blooms. Fertilize your plant once per month during the late spring and summer months when the plant grows and puts out blooms. Fertilizer for acid-loving plants is best.
It is also a good idea to increase fertilizer and sunlight after your plant finishes with its peak blooming season. You may wish to fertilize as often as every two weeks during this time. Fertilizer will encourage the plant to continue growing and producing blooms. However, be sure to stop fertilizing your plant in the fall and winter months. Too much fertilizer over the winter can lead to new growth with no blooms.
Keep your plant in cooler temperatures, ranging between 60 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit, especially at night. Cooler temperatures at night, around 60 degrees, can help the plant keep its blooms longer. You’ll also want to prune and “deadhead” your azaleas often, but be careful not to prune the leaves a lot around blooming season. You don’t want to cut off any flower buds accidentally!
To prune azaleas, trim off any straggly growth. The best time to do a lot of pruning is in mid-to-late summer after it completes its flowering. To deadhead your azalea, cut off any blooms that are past their peak or don’t look very good anymore. Cut them off as soon as they start to go.
What are Popular Potted Azalea Plants to Get?
A popular type of potted azalea is called the Encore Azalea, which gets its name because it has multiple bloom times throughout the year. These can be attractive options if you are looking for an azalea shrub that is in bloom a lot.
If you are looking for an indoor azalea, be sure to get a greenhouse azalea or florist azalea to be grown indoors. Places generally sell indoor azalea plants indoors, making telling them apart from the outdoor varieties easy.
Azaleas do well in pots or containers. They are beautiful, low-maintenance houseplants that can bring bright bursts of color to your home.
Are Coffee Grounds Suitable for Azaleas?
Adding coffee grounds to your potted azalea’s soil can help keep everything acidic, happy, and healthy. Before adding coffee grounds to your azalea pot, be sure to test the soil pH. If the soil is already at a pH of about 4 to 6, adding coffee grounds is probably unnecessary. However, if the soil pH is above 6, adding coffee grounds can help lower the pH back down to a happy range.
Coffee grounds that have been soaked or have been used to brew coffee will work best. Sprinkle some around your azalea plant or mix some into the potting soil. If you compost at home, you can also add used coffee grounds to your compost mixture and then use that compost in your potting soil mix.
Just be careful not to add too much. Coffee grounds can be dense and do not provide good drainage. So mixing in a little goes a long way!
In summary, azaleas are some of the most beautiful plants to have inside your home. They do require a fair amount of sun to grow, so you should consider that when figuring out where the plant should go in your place. However, these plants can dry out quickly, so make sure you monitor the soil frequently if they are in the sun!