shrub

Japanese Azalea

Rhododendron japonicum

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Japanese Azalea (Rhododendron japonicum) at Martin's Home and Garden

Japanese Azalea flowers

Japanese Azalea flowers

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  6 feet

Spread:  6 feet

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade 

Hardiness Zone:  4b

Description:

Clusters of subtle apricot blooms with gray blotches cover this azalea in early to mid spring; a compact upright shrub that is great along borders; needs highly acidic and organic soil that is well drained

Ornamental Features

Japanese Azalea is bathed in stunning clusters of lightly-scented yellow trumpet-shaped flowers with harvest gold overtones and a gray blotch at the ends of the branches from early to mid spring before the leaves. It has green foliage throughout the season. The small oval leaves turn an outstanding yellow in the fall. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Landscape Attributes

Japanese Azalea is an open multi-stemmed deciduous shrub with a more or less rounded form. Its relatively coarse texture can be used to stand it apart from other landscape plants with finer foliage.

This is a relatively low maintenance shrub, and should only be pruned after flowering to avoid removing any of the current season's flowers. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Japanese Azalea is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • Mass Planting
  • General Garden Use

Planting & Growing

Japanese Azalea will grow to be about 6 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 6 feet. It tends to be a little leggy, with a typical clearance of 1 foot from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 40 years or more.

This shrub does best in full sun to partial shade. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It is very fussy about its soil conditions and must have rich, acidic soils to ensure success, and is subject to chlorosis (yellowing) of the leaves in alkaline soils. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution, and will benefit from being planted in a relatively sheltered location. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This species is not originally from North America.

 
 
Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight Soil pH Preference
Characteristics
Accent  Massing  Garden 
Applications
Flowers  Fall Color  Winter Value 
Ornamental Features