Azalea Turned Brown And Looks Burnt

Filed Under: Shrubs · Keywords: Azalea · 273 Views
Hi, we've had a lot of snow and rain in March, and after that my azalea looks all brown (leaves and branches). It might be because of too much water. Is there any way to save the plant? It looks completely dead, however, I can see a few green leaves on the bottom of the plant. Can I try to spray it with fungicides or I should dig it out and replant it to another spot?

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Answer #2 · Natalya's Answer · Hi, John, thank you so much for your advice, - actually I did yesterday exactly what you recommend - I pruned off the brown tips of the plant, and the branches below don’t look dead, - just dry, - so, maybe, it’ll recover. The strange thing is that there are three azaleas growing in the same place, and the other two look OK, but this one (which was the biggest, I planted it 2 years ago) was affected. It’s Girard’s Fuscia, with beautiful dark purple flowers. It will be so sad if it dies. I always plant azaleas somewhat higher than the ground level, maybe I will try to lift it a little bit more after it starts growing (if it starts). Thanks, John! I will keep you posted.)

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Maple Tree

Maple Tree · Gardenality Genius · Zone 10A · 30° to 35° F
Sounds as though you did well. Azalea stems and branches can look dry and dead without leaves. The stems can also be brittle and can break easily making some think they have died. If not checking to see if the tissue under the bark is still green it is best to wait awhile and see if they sprout new growth. This may take awhile but normally azaleas will recover from too much water and or freezing temperatures quite well with normally little damage. Girard’s Fuscia azalea is beautiful. I believe one I purchased from Monrovia nursery a few years ago was this cultivar. A month ago it bloomed so abundantly I couldn't see any of the nice green foliage. Love the deep pink color. Let me know how your plant recovers. Its strange at times why climate conditions can affect some plants and not others but some are just more resistant to some stresses than others.

1 year ago ·
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Answer #1 · Maple Tree's Answer · Hi Natalya-I have the same thing happening to a few azaleas this year after unusually amounts of rain. Spraying with a fungicide will most likely do very little at this time. The problem is in the root system which is most likely suffocated. Too much water can cause fungal diseases and root rot. Most likely if these azaleas have been established for awhile they will recover if the soil is left to dry out somewhat. Along with unusually large amount of rain cold temperatures could have caused some of this damage also. Once the plants have recovered you will be able to see how much damage has been done. At this time I would prune out any dead or damaged stems that are not showing any new growth. New growth will sprout from just below any of these cuts. You can also scratch a small spot off the bark off some of the stems to see if these are still alive. If the tissue is still green under the bark the stem is still alive and most likely sprout new growth in time. If these azaleas are newly planted the soil may not be well draining enough and the plants can be dug up and planted in a location of well draining soil or planted high on a burn which will drain much better. The main thing you can do for now is let the soil dry out and see how much of the plant recovers. At this time I would not fertilize these plants. It is best not to force a plant to put on new growth while under stress. They should recover on their own if the root system was not damaged too much. I noted a link below to an article on how to plant azaleas that may help if you choose to move them or raise them up for better drainage.

Please ask if you have any other questions.


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