Genus of flowering crops within the heath household Ericaceae
Azaleas are flowering shrubs within the genus Rhododendron, significantly the previous sections Tsutsuji (evergreen) and Pentanthera (deciduous). Azaleas bloom within the spring (Might and June within the temperate Northern Hemisphere), their flowers typically lasting a number of weeks. Shade tolerant, they like residing close to or beneath bushes. They’re a part of the household Ericaceae.
Plant fans have selectively bred azaleas for a whole lot of years. This human choice has produced over 10,000 totally different cultivars that are propagated by cuttings. Azalea seeds will also be collected and germinated.
Azaleas are usually slow-growing and do finest in well-drained acidic soil (4.5–6.zero pH).Fertilizer wants are low. Some species want common pruning.
Azaleas are native to a number of continents together with Asia, Europe and North America. They’re planted abundantly as ornamentals within the southeastern US, southern Asia, and components of southwest Europe.
In keeping with azalea historian Fred Galle, in the US, Azalea indica (on this case, the group of crops referred to as Southern indicas) was first launched to the out of doors panorama within the 1830s on the rice plantation Magnolia-on-the-Ashley in Charleston, South Carolina. From Philadelphia, the place they had been grown solely in greenhouses, John Grimke Drayton (Magnolia’s proprietor) imported the crops to be used in his property backyard. With encouragement from Charles Sprague Sargent from Harvard’s Arnold Arboretum, Magnolia Gardens was opened to the general public in 1871, following the American Civil Battle. Magnolia is among the oldest public gardens in America. For the reason that late 19th century, in late March and early April, hundreds go to to see the azaleas bloom of their full glory.
Native American azaleas
Azalea leafy gall may be significantly damaging to azalea leaves through the early spring. Hand choosing contaminated leaves is the advisable technique of management.
They will also be topic to phytophthora root rot in moist, sizzling circumstances.
Cultural significance and symbolism
In Chinese language tradition, the azalea is named “pondering of dwelling bush” (sixiang shu), and is immortalized within the poetry of Du Fu.
The azalea can be one of many symbols of the town of São Paulo, Brazil.
Azaleas and rhododendrons had been as soon as so notorious for his or her toxicity that to obtain a bouquet of their flowers in a black vase was a well known dying risk.
Along with being famend for its magnificence, the azalea can be extremely poisonous—it comprises andromedotoxins in each its leaves and nectar, together with honey from the nectar. Bees are intentionally ate up Azalea/Rhododendron nectar in some components of Turkey, producing a mind-altering, probably medicinal, and sometimes deadly honey referred to as “mad honey”.
Motoyama, Kōchi additionally has a flower pageant by which the blooming of Tsutsuji is well known and Tatebayashi, Gunma is known for its Azalea Hill Park, Tsutsuji-ga-oka.
Nezu Shrine in Bunkyo, Tokyo, holds a Tsutsuji Matsuri from early April till early Might.
Higashi Village has hosted an azalea pageant annually since 1976. The village’s 50,000 azalea crops draw an estimated 60,000 to 80,000 guests annually.
Sobaeksan, one of many 12 well-known Sobaek Mountains, mendacity on the border between Chungbuk Province and Gyeongbuk has a royal azalea (Rhododendron schlippenbachii) pageant held on Might yearly. Sobaeksan has an azalea colony dotted round Biro mountaintop, Gukmang and Yonwha early in Might. When royal azaleas have turned pink ultimately of Might, it seems like Sobaeksan wears a pink Jeogori (Korean conventional jacket).
The Ma On Shan Azalea Competition is held in Ma On Shan, the place six native species (Rhododendron championae, Rhododendron farrerae, Rhododendron hongkongense, Rhododendron moulmainense, Rhododendron simiarum and Rhododendron simsii ) are discovered within the space. The pageant has been held since 2004; it consists of actions reminiscent of exhibitions, picture contests and carnivals.
Many cities in the US have festivals within the spring celebrating the blooms of the azalea, together with Summerville, South Carolina; Hamilton, NJ; Cellular, Alabama; Jasper, Texas; Tyler, Texas; Norfolk, Virginia;Wilmington, North Carolina (North Carolina Azalea Competition);Valdosta, Georgia;Palatka, Florida (Florida Azalea Competition);Pickens, South Carolina;Muskogee, Oklahoma; Brookings, Oregon; and Nixa, Missouri.
The Azalea Path is a delegated path, planted with azaleas in personal gardens, by way of Cellular, Alabama. The Azalea Path Run is an annual street working occasion held there in late March. Cellular, Alabama can be dwelling to the Azalea Path Maids, fifty ladies chosen to function ambassadors of the town whereas sporting antebellum attire, who initially participated in a three-day pageant, however now function all year long.
The Azalea Society of America designated Houston, Texas, an “azalea metropolis”. The River Oaks Backyard Membership has carried out the Houston Azalea Path each spring since 1935.
Valdosta, Georgia is known as the Azalea Metropolis, because the plant grows in profusion there. The town hosts an annual Azalea Competition in March.
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