now that i found my records, my "flame azalea" is actually hinode-giri. does anyone have experience or suggestions for this one? thanks.
Ummmm, Hinode-giri is a very popular Kurume evergreen azalea. Wouldn't think it would be hardy in your area, but a worthy and successful azalea in warmer climates (zone 7 and warmer).
Flame azaleas are the showy deciduous plants.
according to springhill nursery, that is the plant i have. it also called it "hardy" and listed it as zone 5. maybe that is why i am having problems- false claims. the catalog also claimed it grows no more than 4 feet tall.
thanks, rhizo, for your input! i have absolutely no experience with azaleas or rhodo. other than buying my 2 plants based upon the catalog approx. 2 years ago.
What kind of problems are you having?
Hinodegiri probably won't get much more than 4 feet in your area. In more temperate climates, it will probably top out at about 5 feet.
most of it is discussed right here. basically, it is 4-6" tall and looks dead except for 3 or more leaves trying to grow on one branch- both plants, though one is worse. they looked nice when i received them. then, they suffered in my care.
Here is a link that might be useful: red flame thread, mistaken identity
Hindode-giri is a Kurume hybrid, as stated above, but is a bit hardier than most possibly somewhere in the -5F arange as far as buds go.. It is a great plant for zone 6, possibly in very protected parts of zone 5, but not reliable at all in zone 5... Much like Hino Crimson in hardiness. I've seen a few being grown and sold in Ohio and they do bloom reliably *most* winters... I don't know about their long-term survival in colder areas of zone 5 though... The Gable hybrids and Girard hybrids are much more suitable for zone 5 if you want an evergreen azalea.
thank you so much for that information. a lesson has definitely been learned here- research before purchase and don't rely on catalog information.
so what now? it doesn't thrive in the warm periods either. also, would insulating through the cold periods help?
ok, i have read that concret leaching can slowly kill an azalea. is this my problem then? i attempted them as foundation plantings for a house from the 1950's on a concrete slab. i would think any lime would have leached out by now. however, the azaleas are within 2 feet of a new sidewalk.
My mother's kurumes are all plated along her concrete walk and have done fine for the past 36 years. She keeps the soil acidic with some Hollytone and peat every other year. However I would still agree with the other posters that it might be because of your zone. It's a shame but from what I gather (and I'm dealing with this myself attempting to grow one in a container) that it takes about 3 years for the kurumes to gain full hardiness. So it ends up becoming the luck of the draw for when new ones get planted in marginal areas, with a hope that there wouldn't be any unusually harsh winters to take them out before they get fully established.
thank you, jenny. i shall continue to try nursing them back to health or kill them with kindness, whichever comes first.