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Help with dying Azalea

Hello brains trust. I have a very unhappy, almost dead, azalea. I'm in Australia and it's mid summer here, so not just dying off because it's winter.

The plant (and several others) got infested with gnats from a new plant I bought home so I sprayed it with a plant pest control that is apparently not supposed to damage the plant. Not sure if this is the cause or irrelevent.

It was also approx 40 degrees here 2 days in a row about a month ago and this is when the plant really started dying. It was inside with the blinds closed but the leaves dried up a lot. I watered it more after those days and no improvememt. It has not been that hot since and the plant is getting worse so again not sure if this is a cause or not.

Most of the leaves have turned brown and furry on the ends and fallen off. There are 3 parts of the plant that are not completely dead. Does anyone know what the problem may be? And is there any way I can save this plant? I've tried googleing and not really getting anywhere.


  • Hi @k-eaton - It is under extreme stress agreed heat is not good for Azaleas but neither is having them inside too. Try to find a place outdoors that is shaded and cool it at all possible. If you can't find a place outdoor then place in the coolest part of your house.

    Watering is key and not with tap water either  - they are acid loving plants so if you don't have rain water then get specific Rhododendron/Azalea/Camelia liquid feed and use as directed. Water often in extreme heat. 

    Also make sure the compost is right too, needs to be in ericaceous compost not you standard stuff. Check that the plant has not become pot bound (that is the roots are so tightly wrapped in the post that it can't breathe so to speak) This is more common than you think 

    It will take a while but it should revive. is useful.
  • Thanks @batwood14! I don't have outdoor space other than a balcony that gets fun afternoon sun and very windy. I'll see if my parents want it for their garden. It was a lovely plant when I bought it a few months ago.
  • I would put the whole pot in a bucket of water with the water level above the rim of the pot, leave until the bubbles have stopped, then leave it for 24 hrs before lifting out and allowing to drain. Azaleas will tolerate a low dose of tap water,. Spray the leaves every day during really hot weather. They grow naturally in very damp conditions. Repeat soaking the whole pot weekly until the cooler weather returns. Hot dry air kills azaleas just as much as lack of water so as above, move outside into cool shade is essential, if you have it.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 52,052
    It doesn't sound as if you have suitable conditions/climate at all for an azalea @k-eaton.
    They hate hot, dry weather, and being in pots is impossible unless you can provide much better conditions than you have. They need shade, and cooler, damper conditions in order to thrive.  They can cope with sun if they have everything else, and if it doesn't severe, extreme heat  :)
    Windy balconies can be very harsh for many plants unless you can provide enough shelter. 

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
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