Take care, D. Thank you for this well-written and informative post. And thanks for chiming in and letting me know about your azaleas in your winter garden. You have to keep in mind that although we think of azaleas as evergreen, they are, to varying degrees, semi-deciduous. They're "evergreen" shrubs, but that doesn't mean the leaves can't turn bronze or even mostly brown and still be healthy. As with other azaleas, swamp azalea’s leaves start dark green but turn yellow, orange, and even purple in the fall. Swamp Azalea (Rhododendron viscosum) – A Hardy Sweet-Smelling Azalea. Have seen no evidence of moles/voles in this area, but found fire ants, very very small, last summer. I hope this post has helped any of you who have ever wondered why are my azalea leaves turning yellow. An azalea with a nutritional deficiency shows signs that it has a problem. Feb 25, 2016 - Ever wonder...Why are my azalea leaves turning yellow? But your picture is of an entire shrub with yellow leaves in place. In early summer, swamp azalea produces long-tubed white flowers with a pink tinge and clove-like smell. Was just wondering about that . This cycle is called winter burn, or desiccation and is mostly likely what caused your boxwoods/azalea to turn brown or yellowish this winter/early spring. You can apply a liquid fertilizer, such as Miracid. We’ll see. Leaves turn light green to yellow, then creamy white between the veins, while the veins remain green. And great tip on the coffee grounds…thanks for sharing! Thanks again Glenda. Temperature fluctuations, late season fertilization, drying winds, late spring frosts, or lack of snow cover can all contribute to winter injury. I actually did a post back in September about the benefits of using coffee grounds in your garden…prompted by Starbucks’ “Grounds for your Garden” program. However, with others…as sad at it is…I have just replaced them with younger, healthier plants. 5 Must-Have Shrubs with White Flowers…to Extend the Life of Your Garden, Quick & Easy Holiday Gift Embellishments & Décor – Bringing the Outside In →, https://redeemyourground.com/redeem-grounds-coffee-grounds/, http://forums.gardenweb.com/discussions/1730029/old-azaleas-dying-in-sections. In other words, what you’re seeing is normal behavior for azaleas and rhododendrons. Many who have ever grown Azaleas will know that they like an acid pH. We love ours in the Southern states of the US! The discoloration is due to a nitrogen deficiency. Designed and Built by JBP, Natural Play Spaces – Best for Your Kids’ Bodies & Minds [Guest Post by Holly Brooks | King Landscaping], Fertilizing Basics: The ABCs and NPKs of Fertilizer. So as I did last year, I’m briefly interrupting our holiday-related posts to re-post the answer to a question that I’ve had…and one that several of my clients have asked me recently … Why are my azalea leaves turning yellow? If you have an azalea bush (Rhododendron spp.) However, the root system usually has a hard time keeping up with the leaves’ demands. Fall leaf color is yellow to red. This can lead to problems such as yellow leaves which may indicate as an iron deficiency and stunt the plants growth. Flame azalea (R. calendulaceum) is loosely branched and upright, often growing more than 10 to 15 feet tall and wide. That’s what I have done w some of my azaleas, and have gotten a few more seasons out of them. Soil pH is alkaline (Azaleas need acidic soil for Iron) Another potential cause of azaleas with yellow … Excessive yellowing and loss of older leaves are the predominant symptoms on these azalea cultivars. Take care friend, D. I live in the North East and my Azalea bush seems to have more yellow and brown leaves than I remember from previous years. pH is the measured alkalinity or acidity of a soil. The leaf will turn yellow first and then naturally drop off. Hey Glenda…thanks for chiming in. A: It's not unusual for azaleas to turn at least somewhat brown over winter. The veins of the leaves remain green, but the rest of the leaf turns brilliant yellow … 8) What causes yellow leaves on azalea? Glad I could be of service Yane!!!! Azaleas are in the rhododendron family Ericaceae. It will fill in with more leaves next year. Affiliate Disclosure: Redeem Your Ground may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases when links take you to Amazon.com. Here’s the link if you’re interested: https://redeemyourground.com/redeem-grounds-coffee-grounds/. I’ll simply wait for their normal burst of flowers and new leaf growth in the spring. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Over the grey months of winter look out for the many gardens filled with azaleas, and their vibrantly coloured pink, mauve, orange and golden yellow flowers. Azalea – Yellow Leaves in Winter Q: We’ve been in our house for 4 years, and I don’t remember our azaleas ever looking like this in the fall or winter. Q. Azalea Spotting - I planted 5 gallon-sized azaleas last spring. However these, and several others, need acid soil to thrive. I know that both are great added to your compost pile as well…and if I composted, I probably would too. It looks alarming since it is so all encompassing, but if you look closely, the leaves closest to the tips of the branches and the flower buds are still intact. You see…like us, as azaleas age their immune systems can weaken…making them more susceptible to soil borne fungus. Blooming heavily in late spring to early summer, this late season Azalea bears showy dome-shaped clusters of 8 strongly fragrant, trumpet-shaped, frilly flowers with a very pale yellow dorsal flare. Aynsley Broom says: March 13, 2019 at 3:51 pm. Last summer noticed one plant was dying – 1 branch at a time. There’s nothing you need to do or worry about. An occasional yellow leaf now and then isn’t anything to get alarmed about. However, if this is affecting more than one plant or a large amount of foliage, it could signal a problem – like a nutrient deficiency or a drainage issue. In the fall, to protect your azaleas from winter’s chill, you can add mulch around your azaleas. Deciduous azaleas. Since I’m pretty much a self-taught landscape designer (i.e., I don’t have a degree with anything plant in it), I wanted to make sure that I was complete and accurate with my answer…so I reached out to my all-around-plant-guru-friend Holly Brooks from King Landscaping. Large-leaved varieties, like the Indica clan seem more likely to show marked yellowing than the Kurume group. It can produce leaves that are smaller than normal or that turn yellow … There are a number of reasons why this is happening…drought conditions, fungal diseases, borers, etc. Winter Leaf Discoloration. Here is a listing of all the yellow and gold flowering Azalea varieties we offer including light yellow, bright yellow, golden yellow and every other shade of yellow between! Azaleas come in array of vibrant colors and color shades. On all cultivars, new shoot growth in the early summer is much less and stems are smaller in … For information about selecting, planting, and care of azaleas in the landscape, along with descriptions of other potential causes of leaf yellowing and lack of vigor in azaleas, read the UGA publication linked above. And here are three potential answers we’d like to suggest…and what you should do about it, if anything. Light pink and white azaleas turn yellow before their leaf shed, while darker flowering forms usually turn reddish shades. Having random yellow leaves scattered throughout your azaleas is normal…these leaves are simply molting. The soil pH may be lowered by adding ferrous sulfate, finely ground sulfur or iron chelate. Please advise. This occurs when the pH of the soil is high. Is this something I should worry about or do I just have a poor memory? I have a natural area on each side of drive, with approximately 5 azaleas in each area (with other smaller plants) , and these both have some of the same symptoms starting to appear. I’ve been down and out with the flu. Winter injury is commonly seen in the landscape and is a result of environmental factors. Azaleas are a joy to see in any garden, but have you ever encountered the frustrating problem of the leaves turning pale green to yellow. Just wait for new growth in the spring. I, on the other hand, can barely remember where I put my cereal spoon! Azaleas (Rhododendron spp.) Why Are My Azaleas Turning Brown & Dying?. Well it’s happening again … many of the leaves on my azaleas have turned yellow. Q: I have several ‘George L. Taber’ azaleas. Unlike the evergreen varieties, they can be found in orange and yellow. Q. Azaleas With Yellow Leaves - I planted 13 azaleas in my front yard about 5 months ago and now the leaves are turning yellow. Why? Sweet azalea is generally not recommended for the Coastal Plain. They are more delicate than leaves produced in summer, so they are the first to drop when cold weather arrives. I have had similar problems with some of my older azaleas. Hey Linda…glad the info we provided helped. I don’t think they need water as we have had several good rains in the past few weeks. Thanks for reaching out Betty and good luck! But since you mentioned that they are old, I’m thinking it might be due to fungus. Leaves may turn red in fall. – D. Thank you for the advice and pics which look exactly like my mature azaleas in my winter garden (Australia). In the spring I always put my coffee grounds around the bush and this gives them a nice dose of nitrogen to start the season. Winter Injury. Some may turn and then fall off, and others retain the color through the fall and winter. Hi Brenda, “Azaleas grow slowly and rarely need pruning. But these are truly ornamentals for all seasons, offering rich, green foliage all summer long. Chlorosis is usually caused by the soil pH being too high, making iron unavailable to plants. Some azaleas may develop discolored leaves during late winter. If both drought and radical temperature fluctuations are occurring then you will perhaps recognize even more yellowing and loss of foliage. In winter, their leaves turn yellow, then slowly to brown, and then they drop off the plant. Much research has been done but varying amounts of fertilizer seems not to have much effect. Rhododendrons, azaleas, and camellias are amongst our most spectacular flowering shrubs. It is only if the plants show signs of nutritional deficiency or are growing too slowly that you may need to set up an azalea fertilizing schedule. Having a problem with 20 year old azaleas dying. The soil may also be too alkaline. I hope this helps…but if you want to read further, here’s a link that might give you more insight: http://forums.gardenweb.com/discussions/1730029/old-azaleas-dying-in-sections. All azaleas will have some leaf drop. Betty…I’m so sorry that I’m late in responding to you. Hi, For the past 3-4 years, this one azalea has been struggling, getting more yellow and then last year, most branches were bare, but new leaves (but no flowers sprouted). Older leaves may turn red on these cultivars in late summer. Asked July 3, 2017, 8:22 PM EDT. HELP!! Another possibility would be a lack of iron. Easy as that! The yellow leaves are those that were produced back in spring, when life looked good for the plant. I use my coffee grounds like I do our bunny’s manure…simply spreadin it around my planting beds as mulch. Yellowing leaves is normally an indication of stress. Causes for Yellow Leaves on Azalea Plants. This is happening to all of the plants. Azaleas set their leaf buds in the fall…and the emergence of these buds prompts molting. Please check back in for other posts…and I’d love for you to add other words of gardening wisdom from your experience. This year it is only a skeleton. Q: We’ve been in our house for 4 years, and I don’t remember our azaleas ever looking like this in the fall or winter. This is no cause for alarm--it appears worse than it is. Learn more... © 2019-2020 | Redeem Your Ground | All Rights Reserved They are more cold hardy and provide a mass of color in spring. Fortunately for me … there’s no dirt on the underside of my azaleas’ leaves … so it’s just the normal molting process. Thank you! The most common symptom of winter injury in rhododendrons/azaleas is leaves turning brown. In same natural area, the azalea beside it looks like the same thing may be happening. If you're not already subscribed to RYG and want to get periodic updates, links to new posts & other ground redeeming info ... just enter your email address below. They may be yellow, yellowish brown, red, dark red, or green flecked with yellowish or reddish brown. ©2020 Walter Reeves / The Simple Gardener, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Learn more…. A: You’re not old enough to have a poor memory! Depending on how far gone a plant is, you can try to prune out the dead limbs…in hopes of new growth filling in. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. To avoid this condition the plants should be lightly fertilized in late fall. Now, I may throw out a bit of nitrogen-rich fertilizer after the last frost of the year just to be on the safe side to hopefully minimize all the yellow next year. The older leaves are yellow and turning red. The leaves of some evergreen azalea varieties also turn color in the fall. Affiliate Disclosure: RYG may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases when links take you to Amazon.com. Some deciduous varieties explode into shades of yellow and crimson in autumn, while others hold onto green leaves throughout winter. These plants originate from Japan, China and Korea. The non-fragrant flowers range in color from yellow to red and bloom from May to June. As long as the leaves on the tips of your azalea are green, the plant is healthy. He adds, "White and pale-pink colored azaleas will typically have bright yellow-colored foliage just before leaf drop." If so, check out this post to find out why...and what to do about it...if anything. They drop a certain percentage of leaves each winter. Deciduous azaleas drop all their leaves in winter and flower before leaves fully develop. You may want to have a soil test done for that … The plants leaves turn light green and then fade to yellow. Azalea blossoms brighten the spring garden, blooming generously in areas of light shade. Azalea growers struggle with leaf drop every year. However, since both are bioavailable (and the bunny manure doesn’t burn plants like other manures) they are great when simply added directly to your plants…either as mulch on top or amended into the soil. Browse and purchase gardening books by Walter Reeves, plus select titles by other authors. The leaves of some azalea varieties often turn purple, red or yellow in the winter. The older leaves are yellow and turning red. So what’s up? (Read my article on the solution for azaleas with yellow leaves). It is normal for most evergreen azaleas to lose some foliage during winter months, however, if it's more than 20% or so, it's not normal. They will not tolerate alkaline soil conditions: their leaves go yellow, growth is stunted and they eventually fail. In areas where the evergreen azaleas are marginal, deciduous azaleas might best be selected (Figure 5). An azalea begins to suffer from chlorosis when there is a serious iron deficiency in the soil. Q. Azalea With Yellow Leaves - My azalea has been extremely healthy all summer but now has lots of leaves turning yellow and falling off. How to Make Homemade Mulling Spices … the Perfect Teacher Gift or Hostess Gift this Christmas! The result: leaves and needles turning brown and dying. I’m an extension Master Gardener, and I swear a good 60% of the problems I help fix could have been avoided if people had only found solid information from knowledgeable sources, instead of throwing Epsom salts on everything because Pinterest said to XD Commenting mostly to boost this post’s SEO rank, you rock, and more people should see your stuff. It seems that every year around this time a disproportionate number of my azaleas’ leaves have turned yellow…and the bright yellow really stands out because the only other colors going on in my yard are green and brown. Azaleas turning yellow, spreading to other azaleas. Discoloration can be yellow leaves or reddish-brown leaves. They make an excellent cut flower. It is best to fertilize your azaleas between April through August. All of this being said doesn't mean that your Azaleas will die. Do I just have a soil seen no evidence of moles/voles azaleas turning yellow in winter this area, but found ants! 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