Encore azaleas are commonly grown hybrids created by combining spring-blooming azaleas with summer-blooming azaleas. The result is a distinct variety that flowers during spring, summer and fall. There are 24 types of Encore azaleas, each with slightly different size, color and flower structure. Encore azaleas are easy to grow in most temperate regions and require only minimum maintenance and care to thrive.
Plant Encore azaleas during early spring in a location that receives a minimum of four to six hours of direct sunlight each day. Spread 1 inch of peat moss over the surface of the planting site and use a garden tiller to incorporate it into the soil to increase fertility and drainage.
Water Encore azaleas immediately after planting, and keep the soil consistently moist until winter by watering twice each week. Increase or reduce the frequency of watering based on rainfall and temperature conditions to ensure the soil never dries out completely.
Reduce frequency of watering to once per week after the first year, but only during weeks with no rainfall. Encore azaleas do not require supplemental watering after one year of growth, except during times of extreme drought.
Spread a 2-inch layer of organic mulch over the surface of the soil surrounding Encore azaleas. Upkeep the mulch, adding more as often as necessary to keep it 2 inches thick. Increase the thickness of the mulch to 4 inches just before the onset of winter to further insulate the soil and protect the roots against the freezing and thawing of the soil.
Feed Encore azaleas once per month using a balanced 10-10-10 NPK fertilizer. Begin fertilizing in April and cease in August. Follow the directions provided by the manufacturer for proper application and dosage. Water thoroughly before and after fertilizing for the best results.