Blue Azalea

mike423(5 IL)December 14, 2010

Hey everyone, I was just wondering if anyone knew where to find a deep blue Azalea?I know most people say that there is no true blue cultivar, but I have seen some pictures and some of them look pretty dark blue to me. I am having no luck finding where to buy one, online or other wise. If anyone might know where I could acquire one it would be greatly appreciated. It would also need to be able to withstand Chicago winters (zone 5) but since I would be growing as a bonsai (and therefore protected in winter) I can be a little lenient on its hardiness.

I posted a link of a beautiful big one. Thanks

http://www.moyclare.co.uk/pix/11808318.jpg

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rhodyman(SE PA, USDA Z6)

Rhododendrons include elepidotes, lepidtotes and azaleas.
There are evergreen and deciduous azaleas.

Several lepidote azaleas are blue and look a lot like azaleas including:

Rcv. Rhein's Luna hardy to -15F:

Rcv. Bluenose hardy to -15F:

R. dauricum hardy to -25F:

Rcv. Purple Gem hardy to -20F

One of the bluest evergreen azaleas is Blue Danube which is only hardy to -10F.

One of the hardiest deciduous azaleas is R. nudipes ssp. nudipes but it is only hardy to -10F.

Purple Gem should be easy to find and Bluenose should be fairly easy to find.

Purple Gem is available at: greergardens.com in Eugene, Oregon, and vanveennursery.com in Portland, Oregon.

Bluenose is available at: rarefindnursery.com in Jackson, NJ.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2010 at 2:48PM
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mainegrower(Z5b ME)

Pictures of "blue" rhododendrons can be very misleading, especially in this Photoshop era. The truth is, all so-called blue rhododendrons have some red in the flower color so they would be more accurately described as purple. That said, the closest to true blue in my experience is 'Blue Ridge". This hybrid seems to be increasingly available after a time when it could not be found easily. It's semi-deciduous and has bloomed for me after -12 to -15. It's not really blue either, but closer than any other I've seen in reality rather than pictures.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 5:20AM
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rhodyman(SE PA, USDA Z6)

I said:

"Rhododendrons include elepidotes, lepidtotes and azaleas.
There are evergreen and deciduous azaleas."

Which is true, then I went on to say:

"Several lepidote azaleas are blue and look a lot like azaleas"

Which is not true. I meant to say, lepidote rhododendrons. All azaleas are elepidotes but are not grouped with elepidote rhododendrons for other major reasons.

Blue Ridge is a nice lepidote rhododendron but I don't think I would call it blue either, close though.

It is hardy to -15F, but is not available from Van Veen, Greer, nor Rarefind. It may become available at Rarefind.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 9:23AM
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maryneedssleep(5a (PA))

I also was thinking of getting a purple-blue rhody this year, and saw two other dwarf lepidote rhodies that looked interesting:
'Starry Night' (AKA 'Gletschernacht') and 'Blue Baron'.

Any thoughts on these?

    Bookmark   December 16, 2010 at 5:36PM
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livinez(6pa)

Whitney Gardens & Nursery lists Blue Ridge. I've not had luck with the "blue" rhododendrons in the Philly area, they've succumbed to the heat. If heat is indeed the issue, I don't see them doing any better in WV.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2010 at 7:28PM
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mainegrower(Z5b ME)

I've grown both 'Starry Night' and 'Blue Baron'(which has 'Starry Night' as one of its parents). Both plants have striking flowers although neither is really blue. 'Starry Night' lingered for a number of years, but was never really happy and never looked as good as it did at the nursery. I still have 'Blue Baron' which is something of a challenge. It needs considerable sun to set flower buds, but requires shade in the winter to avoid bark split and dessication. Two years ago many nurseries throughout New England had large numbers of beautifully grown, blooming 'Blue Barons' for sale. Unfortunately, they were labeled as Z5 hardy which they most definitely are not. I'm sure a ton of them were sold, but I doubt if a very high percentage are still alive. My own two have grown well but have never shown the luxuriant bloom the ones in the nurseries exhibited.

If you're in a cool mountain area of WV, I'd say both are worth a try - the species r. russatum is in both, so heat is not to their liking. Winter shade and protection from drying winds is important.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2010 at 5:36AM
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leef2_verizon_net

doe anyone know where is can purchse on line ribbon candy and blue baron and any shogetsu type thanks lee

    Bookmark   February 23, 2011 at 6:22PM
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mike423(5 IL)

heres a site where you can get the Blue baron

http://www.avantgardensne.com/catalog/product.cgi/5101/P1/default/N/0

Dont know if this site has any of the others you are looking for but they seem to have a large overall selection of rhododendrons.

http://www.rarefindnursery.com/index.cfm/action/displayProducts/level/2:4.htm

-Mike

    Bookmark   February 23, 2011 at 10:23PM
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