• Overview
    Light Needs:
    Filtered sun
    Watering Needs:
    Needs regular watering - weekly, or more often in extreme heat.
    Average Landscape Size:
    Moderate grower to 2 to 4 ft. tall, 3 to 5 ft. wide.
    Key Feature:
    Spring Flowering
    Blooms:
    Spring
  • Detail
    Botanical Pronunciation:az-ZAY-lee-uh
    Plant type:Shrub, Rhododendron
    Deciduous/evergreen:Evergreen
    Growth rate:Moderate
    Average landscape size:Moderate grower to 2 to 4 ft. tall, 3 to 5 ft. wide.
    Special features:Easy Care
    Foliage color:Green
    Blooms:Spring
    Flower color:Purplish-pink
    Flower attributesShowy Flowers
    Garden styleAsian/Zen
    Design IdeasKaren is without a doubt among the most coveted azaleas for front foundation bed planting. It's cherished for position near the front door to call attention in the spring with its exquisite mass of color. Outstanding shrub for all beds and borders and will integrate with nearly every plant sharing the same requirements. Azaleas naturally thrive in the acidic soils beneath natural woodlands or ornamental groves of evergreen and hardwood trees. This is an essential of the Japanese tea garden as a symbol of spring, and is found in gardens throughout Asia.
    Companion PlantsKaren is perfect with other elegant foundation shrubs that bloom in other seasons such as Penny Mac Hydrangea, (Hydrangea macrophylla 'Penny Mac'), Petite Orchid Crape Myrtle, (Lagerstroemia indica 'Monhid'), Black Beauty Elder, (Sambucus nigra 'Gerda') and Mountain Fire Pieris, (Pieris japonica 'Mountain Fire').
  • Care
    Care Information
    Follow a regular watering schedule during the first growing season to establish a deep, extensive root system. Provide well drained soil, rich in organic matter. Feed with an acid fertilizer after bloom. Keep roots cool with a thick layer of mulch.
    Light Needs:
    <strong>Partial Sun / Partial Shade</strong>: These two terms are often used interchangeably to mean 3-6 (or 4-6) hours of sunlight each day. However, there is a difference.
<strong>Partial shade</strong> typically means the plants will appreciate a more gentle exposure such as the weaker morning or early afternoon sun, with the emphasis on providing the minimum needed shade and sheltering from intense late afternoon sun. <strong>Partial sun</strong> typically means the plants <u>need</u> some direct sun, so the emphasis is on meeting the required minimum hours of sunlight, with filtered sunlight or shade the balance of the day.
Both are best with shelter from the harshest late afternoon sun. This shade could be provided by a structure, a wall, larger plants or  tree(s).
    Filtered sun
    Watering Needs:
    Water needs: Moderate
    Needs regular watering - weekly, or more often in extreme heat.
  • History & Lore
    History:
    Karen is a hybrid developed from the species, R. kaempheri, native to volcanic slopes of northern Japan. The species was introduced to the United States via Arnold Arboretum in the 1890s and various American breeders took up breeding domestic cultivars. This is among the Gable Hybrids, produced by Joe Gable who crossed R. kaempheri with R. poukhanense, then added evergreen R. maxwellii as well as a number of early hybrids into his breeding program. Gable introduced dozens of excellent varieties over a period of fifty years from 1920 to 1980, all developed at his nursery in Stewartstown, Pennsylvania.