When to Feed Azaleas

By Renee Gerber , last updated June 12, 2011

Azaleas are lovely plants that bloom stunning, delicate flowers that range in color from pink to yellow to purple. They are ideal for ornamentation on your home's front lawn. At times, you will notice that your azaleas may be in need of feeding. This is when a good fertilizer will come in handy.

As a general rule, you should feed your azalea plants once per year at the beginning of spring. It is essential to wait until after the winter, along with the final frost, has officially passed before you do this. More likely than not, one time should be enough, but if you notice your azaleas beginning to show signs of wilting and not doing too well overall even though you are taking every necessary step to keep them healthy, you may have to feed them a second time. Sometime during the summer, prior to August, is a good time for a second feeding.

Make sure to use a good balanced fertilizer that comes in liquid form. Applying it to your azaleas during the second feeding in the summer will encourage new, healthy growth. Read all the directions on the label of your fertilizer's bottle and be diligent about following them. This will ensure that your plants will remain healthy.

The best type of fertilizer to use when caring for your azaleas is a slow release nitrogen variety. The label should specify that it is meant for azaleas, and possibly one or more other plants as well. As always, make sure you feed your plants after they have finished blooming, and make sure to apply it around their roots. Avoid allowing the fertilizer to come into direct contact with the azalea plant's leaves, as this can cause a problem. An acid type of fertilizer is also recommended, but if you apply mulch to your azaleas' beds, this shouldn't be necessary.

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