Mystery Azalea

South GA

Mystery Azalea

22 Mar '07 5:47 am
I have an odd Azalea in my yard that no one can name. It's already been determined that it is NOT a "Festive", "Acrobat", "Geisha" nor "Robin Dale". It is a late bloomer (most azaleas here are blooming now but this one won't bloom for nearly another month). Another key thing to note is it's a more narrow leaf.

The pink is a duller pink than those mentioned above, and the camera did "brighten" the color up a bit. It's almost (but nit quite) a mauve. All 3 shots came from a single plant. The picture that is light pink with white edges has only happened once in the 12 years I've lived here. Occasionally, it does produce a few blooms that are solid white. They were actually planted nearly 40 years ago by the original homeowners.

We think it may be a type of Satsuki, or Glen Dale (it's just not physically fancy enough to me to be a Robin)... any ideas? :?:

gardening consultant
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Waterloo, Belgium

22 Mar '07 7:47 pm
Dear Friend, I cannot really help you with your ...crazy coloured, but gorgeous, Azaleas , by giving you their exact botanical names. I can only see here by your photos , that they are probably 2 separate plants! They all look as Azaleas Japonicas, as I can tell by their leaves and form of flowers (: they are NOT Chinese/Mollis, which are deciduous and very tall). Of course, the Rhododendron Family is full of surprises and hybrids, so you never know...

Now. The two first photos, present your bi-coloured Azalea, I think a work of Art, created by the bees visitors of your garden. The third photo, though, looks like coming from a totally different plant, having rounder, shorter, and more shiny leaves, and even more, totally different flowers. Do you think, that there is a possibility, that many plants , having been planted in the past -- 40 years ago!-- really close , SEEM to be over the years, as being a single plant ?

You can probably find their botanical names, if you search in Google/images by the words, "bi-coloured Azaleas Japonicas" , and "pink Azaleas Japonicas". Good luck!
"..So,perhaps, it is easiest, through awareness of flowers in particular, of their radiant beauty and purity, their vibrant colour, to come to the excellence of the One and be uplifted beyond thought to our divine selves".Dorothy Maclean

South GA

28 Mar '07 1:22 am
I don't think that they are two different plants... the third bloom has only appeared once in the 12 years I've been here, and the home has been in my husband's family since 1972 with no blooms like that before that anyone can recall. Blooms on the same stalk had the same pink fleck to them as the other photos (the leaves being different may be weeds since this was before I pruned them back and thinned the stumps out).

I'll keep searching though! Thanks!

garden enthusiast
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Waikato-New Zealand


28 Mar '07 5:46 am
You have got us all curious now South GA ! Please let us know if you find any information !

South GA

3 Apr '07 4:07 am
I asked a friends husband the other day who has several old hybrids you can't find any more and he's as stumped as I am. But now, he wants cuttings too.

So far, now that it's blooming, there is no sign of that third type bloom--I didn't really expect it because I had trimmed it back so far last spring. Maybe next year. I'll keep looking.

head gardener
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4 Apr '07 1:43 pm
It's proof that nature is so much smarter than all of us!
Head Gardener

Jack Holloway
Passionate Gardener
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SEQUOIA FARM Haenertsburg South Africa

Varied-flowered azalea

11 Apr '07 3:55 pm
I've seen this happen before, and also have an example or two in my garden of similar bushes - but will have to wait to September to take pics. It is a form of throwback mutation. Many of the 'patterned' azaleas, so I interpret it, are mutants of crosses between pink and white azaleas. Usually the result is a paler pink, but sometimes the flower breaks into a quite specific pink and white pattern. Very occasionally a bush has a whole branch reverting, or just individual flowers, or oddly striped flowers. It seems that an 'unstable' bush often goes both ways, so that you have the patterned mutant originally planted plus white plus pink flowers. However yours might be a 'fresh' mutant as its multicoloured flowers are rare. I discovered a WHOLE HEDGE of such varied azaleas at the local hotel where we have our Rotary meetings towards the end of last season. You inspire me to find out more - I am afterall surrounded here by the azalea experts in Africa. (Africa - but still :) ) Perhaps they were all originally grown as cuttings from one unstable branch...

South GA

CRAZY Azalea time!!!!

11 Apr '07 5:21 pm
Guys, I haven't had a chance to snap new pics of the bush, it's on the down swing now and there are some CRAZY blooms going on this time!

Most are the white with pink flecks, but a few are actually that way plus 1/4 to 1/2 solid pink... As I suspected that 3rd bloom did not appear this year, BUT about 1/3 of a single bloom turned out to be like that 3rd pic! Hopefully, I will find the time (and my missing camera--munchkins took off with it I think) to snap the pics I want tomorrow.

There isn't as much variation as there used to be but then I did do a number on cutting it back last year.

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