Azalea with burnt tips

Azalea with burnt tips

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Question: Azalea with burnt tips

Hi, I bought 1 week an Azalea I think is Japonica. I poured it and on the first week I watered it just once. The week later it had the tips of brownish flowers. What happened? And above all, what should I do now? Thanks

Answer: Azalea with burnt tips

Dear Vanessa,
the azaleas are quite resistant and robust plants, which need some changes. First of all the soil, since you repotted it: the azaleas are decidedly acidophilic plants, they do not develop well in the common universal soil, and prefer soils with a very acid ph, consisting of pure peat or mixtures specially prepared for acidophilic plants. Even watering may have been wrongly provided: plants are living beings, and it is not possible to establish a rule on when to water them; we cannot for example declare: I water my plants on Wednesdays, especially if they are kept in the garden, because the climatic variables are too numerous to be sure that every Wednesday your plants are thirsty. Azaleas are plants that need a fresh and quite moist soil, but at the same time they do not like water stagnations, especially if prolonged; during the growing season, from March to October, they need fairly regular watering, to be provided when the soil tends to dry out. The rot of the buds may be due to both drought and excess water; the next time you water, instead of looking at the calendar, check the soil of the plant; if it is still fresh and moist it sends back the watering, if on the contrary it is very dry, water it and plan to intensify the water supplies.
The exposure of the plant obviously changes its watering needs, and so does the climate and rainfall: if a plant is exposed to the sun for many hours in June, clearly it needs very frequent watering; the same plant placed in the shade will need less water.
The burned buds could also be due to excesses of insolation: the azaleas love the very bright positions, even sunny, possibly in the coolest hours of the day; as we said before, if they are very sunny, they should be watered more often. And if you don't know what azalea you bought, the question becomes more complicated: the varieties of azaleas that are grown in the apartment tend to like very little the direct rays of the sun, and to prefer bright, but always shaded positions. If it is an indoor azalea, with good probability in the nursery where you bought it they kept it inside the greenhouses, among the houseplants. If instead it was outdoors, among garden shrubs, it is probably a garden azalea. Another problem may then be due to differences in climate and insolation compared to what it received in the nursery or in the shop; I happened to see garden plants in the supermarket, already in February, which were on display on large pallets, positioned in the middle lane, and therefore subject to the heating in the shop. Clearly, even a garden shrub, accustomed for a few days to a constant climate with 20 ° C, and nothing insolation (in the supermarket where I do the shopping the sun does not enter), it cannot be abruptly moved outdoors; when we bring home a plant kept in these conditions, we can take it outdoors only gradually, otherwise the cold night (or the daytime heat) and the sun literally burn it.