If you are looking for a real punch of colour in winter and spring then you can’t go past Azaleas. They vary in size from small, rather delicate perennial shrubs, to the large, hardy indica varieties that seem able to survive all the climatic challenges that are thrown at them. Flowers can be in either single or double form and are available in such a wide range of colours.

How to grow azaleas in a garden

  1. Choose a spot in the garden with semi-shade and that gets protection from the harsh afternoon sun.  Enrich the soil with Yates Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver & Plant Fertiliser. If the soil is clay based, add gypsum and fork in well.
  2. Dig the planting hole twice as wide and to the same depth as the root-ball. Remove the shrub from the container, gently tease the roots.
  3. Position in hole and backfill, gently firming down. Form a raised ring around the plant, creating a well so that water will go where it’s needed most. Water in well. 
  4. Mulch around the base with organic mulch like bark chips, sugarcane or pea straw, keeping it away from the main stem.
  5. Feed every 1-2 weeks with Yates Thrive Roses and Flowers Liquid Plant Food.

How to grow azaleas in a pot

  1. Choose a pot at least 600mm wide. Position in semi-shade and fill with quality potting mix, such as Yates Potting Mix with Dynamic Lifter.
  2. Remove the shrub from the container, gently tease the roots.
  3. Position in hole and backfill, gently firming down. Water in well.
  4. Feed every 1-2 weeks with Yates Thrive Roses and Flowers Liquid Plant Food.

Growing tips

  • Prune immediately after flowering finishes. With some varieties blooming continues for months so it’s important to be patient. 
  • Always maintain a layer of organic mulch (e.g. a 10 centimetre thickness of old leaves) over the shallow roots. This insulates the roots and helps protect them from drying out. 
  • In order to achieve success with azaleas in alkaline soil areas, mix some moistened peat moss and milled cow manure into the planting area.  
  • To achieve a slightly acidic soil you may need to apply Yates Soil Acidifer Liquid Sulfur to lower the pH of the soil. 
  • Get your plants ready for the summer months by giving them a feed and a trim after flowering and apply Yates Waterwise Soil Wetter over the root area. 
  • Azaleas are not recommend for planting in kids gardens as the plant is poisonous if consumed.


Here are a few simple steps to keeping your azaleas looking fantastic:

  • Azalea petal blight is a disease that attacks azalea flowers, turning them into brown mush. To prevent azalea petal blight, just before the flower buds open start spraying Yates Mancozeb Plus Garden Fungicide and Miticide
  • Azalea lace bug is a sap sucking insect pest that causes a silvery mottled appearance on azalea leaves. You might also notice dark spots underneath the leaves, which are lace bug droppings. As with azalea petal blight, a proactive approach is required as once the leaves are damaged, it cannot be reversed. Start spraying both sides of new foliage in early spring with Baythroid® Advanced Insect Killer for Gardens to protect leaves from lace bug damage.
  • Azaleas prefer an acidic soil (with a pH of 5.5 – 6.0) so in areas with alkaline (basic) soil, apply some Yates Soil Acidifier Liquid Sulfur to reduce the soil pH.
  • To help promote healthy foliage growth and lots of beautiful flowers, feed azaleas with Yates® Thrive® Roses & Flowers Natural Organic Based Pelletised Plant Food. It contains more than 50% natural ingredients, boosted with fast acting fertilisers. It contains extra potassium to promote lots of flowers as well as nitrogen and phosphorus to encourage healthy leaf and stem growth and a strong root system. Scatter Yates Thrive Natural Roses & Flowers around the root zone of azaleas every 8 weeks and water in well after applying

Project guides & articles


Vibrant, colourful flowers with shiny green leaves, Agapanthus can really brighten up your garden.


Ageratum flowers are tough plants that can even handle a bit of shade. They are the truest blue annuals you can find for your garden.


Looking for options for groundcover, try growing ajuga. Ajuga has a wide variety of foliage colors usually in the rich deep burgundy realm.


How to grow yellow Allamanda! A tropical evergreen shrub features large golden-yellow flowers. Please note in QLD it's an invasive plant.

Recommended products