Monday, May 28, 2012

The Beautiful Azalea 'Mandarin Lights'

Last summer I went a little nutty with adding Azaleas to my garden. I planted three, to be exact; not too many, really, but one too many within a week. I get that way sometimes. I’ve had Clematis moments and coneflower moments and Rudbeckia moments and Aster moments and so on. So last year it was Azaleas. Plus, they were at a great price, so how could I resist? A girl can only have so much self-restraint.

Anyway, I may have gone a little Azalea-happy, but my enthusiasm wasn’t going to guarantee that they’d do well for me, especially since I’d never grown one outdoors.

But.

It seems that one of them is rather happy in my humble little garden under my humble care, and has flowered to let me know just how happy it is.

Apparently, very happy. Just look at the blooms.


They are unbelievable. They practically glow in the dark. Even the photos don’t quite capture the intensity of these orange flowers.

Here is the development that I witnessed over a couple of weeks. The plant filled up with blooms...



...and I waited patiently for them to open up.



And within a few short days, the flowers emerged.



They are the most stunning orange I’ve ever seen.



And I was quite flattered that this plant has bloomed for me despite it being my first attempt at growing an Azalea.


Now, I hope that the other two Azaleas in my garden perform just as well. There are no signs yet of flowers, but we’ll see what happens. At the very least, I’ve gotten a glimpse into how amazing these plants are.

12 comments:

  1. I LOVE this Azalea!!! They look so pitiful during the winter with no leaves at all, then the flowers come firstly then the leaves. The colour is beautiful. Nice job!

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    1. It is far nicer than I expected. And you are right when you say that they look pitiful in the winter. But come spring and BAM! LOL...

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  2. Spectacular orange - my favourite colour! i may need to get me some Azaleas... :)

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    1. Orange is my absolute favourite colour in the garden, but there aren't that many plants that produce that shade in flowers. Whenever I see one, I have to have it!

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  3. Wow! Maybe the Azalea god only allows one such beauty per garden! It is certainly stunning! Did you plant them side by side? I'm quite curious to know i the other two will flower. I'm so glad you got that camera, martha!

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    1. You may be right, Francie. And there really is an Azalea God, for those that don't believe. I didn't plant them side by side; they're all in different areas. So far this one seems the happiest. The others are growing, so I'm curious to see what happens. Thank you for the camera comment; that is very kind :)

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  4. Stunning is right, Martha. Those orange blooms really do glow.These grow very happily here in RI. Our climate must be very similar to yours. Most people go for the usually pink ones, though, which can get a bit boring.

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    1. I'm guessing that our climate is similar, but that it is warmer where you live. Either way, this plant seems to like it here, which works for me. The other two that I have produce yellow and white flowers, which I'm curious to see. I hope they bloom so I can get a chance to find out just how nice they are.

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  5. These are stunning. I love the red, orange and green shades. I am still amazed that you are able to immortalize their blooming like that.

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    1. Thank you! I try to squeeze in a lot of time in my garden, and while I'm out there, I often snap tons of photos. It really pays off!

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  6. Your azaleas are gorgeous! You must be doing something right! They can be finicky. I had a Pink Northern Lights Azalea which didn't make it through this past dry winter. It had a wonderful fragrance. The color on yours is so vibrant and bright!

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    1. Thank you, CraveCute. I guess my TLC is paying off. Yes, these plants can be quite finicky. This one seems the happiest; I'm curious to see how the other two will do. They've managed to survive their first winter, which was dry here, too, so that's a good omen.

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