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Encore® Azalea Rhododendron Encore®

Phonetic Spelling
roh-do-DEN-dron
This plant has high severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Encore® azaleas are evergreen, cultivar shrubs in the Ericaceae (blueberry) family that typically grow 2 to 5 feet tall and 3 to 4 feet wide. These cultivars bloom not only in the spring but also in the summer and fall, hence the name encore. The genus name derives from the Greek words rhodo, which means rose, and dendron, meaning tree.

Though many azaleas require shade, Encore® azaleas do well in sunny locations of the landscape as well as partial or dappled shade from an overhead canopy of trees. For the best blooms, plant in a location that receives 4 to 6 hours of sun with afternoon shade. Plant in well draining, moist, acidic soils that have a high organic content and be sure to water regularly.  Add a 3 inch layer of organic mulch each winter to protect the root zone from freezing. These low maintenance shrubs require very little pruning and no deadheading.

There are two sizes—dwarf and intermediate—and they come in a variety of colors from white, to pinks, purples, and reds. The dwarf cultivars reach a maximum height of 3 1/2 feet and make a good choice for the middle of a border. Intermediate cultivars reach a height of 5 feet tall and are more suitable for the backs of borders. These showy shrubs also work very well as a specimen in a container and can add color and interest to the understory of a woodland garden or naturalized area. Utilize their diminutive height as a low hedge or planted along a foundation where their blooms can be enjoyed from a window.  Butterflies and hummingbirds are attracted to the blooms, so plant them near a patio, pool, or walkway where the wildlife show is best enjoyed.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems: Insect problems include aphids, borers, lace bugs, leafhoppers, mealybugs, mites, nematodes, scale, thrips, and whitefly. Diseases include canker, crown rot, root rot, leaf spot, rust, and powdery mildew. This plant is frequently damaged by deer.

While these shrubs remain very popular for landscape use, many cultivars are susceptible to Phytophthora root rot– this leads to leaf loss, reduced vigor, branch dieback, and wilting.  Implement good cultural practices first, such as improving drainage with organic matter or berms and avoiding overwatering or overfertilization.  However, if you have a site with a history of this disease, consider planting one of the root rot-resistant alternative species listed in the left-hand sidebar.

Many Rhododendron cultivars are susceptible to Phytophthora root rot. For suitable alternatives, see this video created by Charlotte Glen as part of the Plants, Pests, and Pathogens series. 

VIDEO Created by Elizabeth Meyer for "Trees, Shrubs and Conifers" a plant identification course offered in partnership with Longwood Gardens.

More information on Rhododendron.

Profile Video:
See this plant in the following landscapes:
Courtyard Entrance Garden Cottage Style Foundation Planting Courtyard Entrance Garden Backyard Respite Landscape Courtyard Entrance Garden Flower Bonanza Garden Michael McCarthy Memorial Garden, All Saints Episcopal, Concord
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Autumn Amethyst'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Angel'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Belle'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Bonfire'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Bravo'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Carnation'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Carnival'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Cheer'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Chiffon'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Coral'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Debutante'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Embers'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Empress'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Fire'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Ivory'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Jewel'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Lilac'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Lily'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Monarch'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Moonlight'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Princess'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Rouge'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Royalty'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Ruby'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sangria'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Starlite'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sunburst'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sundance'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sunset'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sweetheart'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Twist'
    Intermediate
  • 'Conlic'
    Bright red
'Autumn Amethyst', 'Autumn Angel', 'Autumn Belle', 'Autumn Bonfire', 'Autumn Bravo', 'Autumn Carnation', 'Autumn Carnival', 'Autumn Cheer', 'Autumn Chiffon', 'Autumn Coral', 'Autumn Debutante', 'Autumn Embers', 'Autumn Empress', 'Autumn Fire', 'Autumn Ivory', 'Autumn Jewel', 'Autumn Lilac', 'Autumn Lily', 'Autumn Monarch', 'Autumn Moonlight', 'Autumn Princess', 'Autumn Rouge', 'Autumn Royalty', 'Autumn Ruby', 'Autumn Sangria', 'Autumn Starlite', 'Autumn Sunburst', 'Autumn Sundance', 'Autumn Sunset', 'Autumn Sweetheart', 'Autumn Twist', 'Conlic'
Tags:
#hummingbirds#showy flowers#poisonous#small spaces#fall flowers#specimen#nectar plant#spring flowers#dwarf#hedges#summer flowers#foundation planting#long bloom time#poolside planting#naturalized area#leathery leaves#border back#border middle#walkway planting#small group plantings#patio planting#butterfly friendly#understory shrub#problem for cats#problem for dogs#problem for horses#shrub borders#woodland garden#mccarthy memorial garden#container plant#low hedge
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Autumn Amethyst'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Angel'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Belle'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Bonfire'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Bravo'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Carnation'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Carnival'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Cheer'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Chiffon'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Coral'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Debutante'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Embers'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Empress'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Fire'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Ivory'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Jewel'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Lilac'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Lily'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Monarch'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Moonlight'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Princess'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Rouge'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Royalty'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Ruby'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sangria'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Starlite'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sunburst'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sundance'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sunset'
    Dwarf
  • 'Autumn Sweetheart'
    Intermediate
  • 'Autumn Twist'
    Intermediate
  • 'Conlic'
    Bright red
'Autumn Amethyst', 'Autumn Angel', 'Autumn Belle', 'Autumn Bonfire', 'Autumn Bravo', 'Autumn Carnation', 'Autumn Carnival', 'Autumn Cheer', 'Autumn Chiffon', 'Autumn Coral', 'Autumn Debutante', 'Autumn Embers', 'Autumn Empress', 'Autumn Fire', 'Autumn Ivory', 'Autumn Jewel', 'Autumn Lilac', 'Autumn Lily', 'Autumn Monarch', 'Autumn Moonlight', 'Autumn Princess', 'Autumn Rouge', 'Autumn Royalty', 'Autumn Ruby', 'Autumn Sangria', 'Autumn Starlite', 'Autumn Sunburst', 'Autumn Sundance', 'Autumn Sunset', 'Autumn Sweetheart', 'Autumn Twist', 'Conlic'
Tags:
#hummingbirds#showy flowers#poisonous#small spaces#fall flowers#specimen#nectar plant#spring flowers#dwarf#hedges#summer flowers#foundation planting#long bloom time#poolside planting#naturalized area#leathery leaves#border back#border middle#walkway planting#small group plantings#patio planting#butterfly friendly#understory shrub#problem for cats#problem for dogs#problem for horses#shrub borders#woodland garden#mccarthy memorial garden#container plant#low hedge
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Rhododendron
    Family:
    Ericaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Wildlife Value:
    Butterflies and hummingbirds are attracted to the flowers.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 5 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 3 ft. 0 in. - 4 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Poisonous
    Shrub
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Maintenance:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Dappled Sunlight (Shade through upper canopy all day)
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    High Organic Matter
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    3 feet-6 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8b, 8a, 9a, 10a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Cream/Tan
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Long Bloom Season
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Funnel
    Flower Description:
    2 1/2" blooms, 5 petal singles, or doubles or semi-double, many colors including speckeld and striped.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Leaf Feel:
    Leathery
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Simple, alternative ovate leaves with entire margins. Some cultivars have purple or bronze leaves.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Naturalized Area
    Patio
    Pool/Hardscape
    Small Space
    Walkways
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Foundation Planting
    Hedge
    Small groups
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Hummingbirds
    Pollinators
    Problems:
    Poisonous to Humans
    Problem for Cats
    Problem for Dogs
    Problem for Horses
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    High
    Poison Symptoms:
    Salivation, watering of eyes and nose, abdominal pain, loss of energy, depression, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, cardiac failure, difficult breathing, progressive paralysis of arms and legs, coma.
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Andromedotoxin, Grayantoxin
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Bark
    Flowers
    Fruits
    Leaves
    Roots
    Sap/Juice