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Rhododendron viscosum (Swamp Azalea)

Swamp Azalea, Swamp Honeysuckle, White Swamp Honeysuckle, Clammy Azalea, Cory Azalea, Hammock Sweet Azalea, Deciduous Azalea, Very Late Season Rhododendron

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Rhododendron Viscosum, Swamp Azalea, Swamp Honeysuckle, White Swamp Honeysuckle, Deciduous Azalea, Very Late Season Rhododendron, Fragrant Rhododendron, White Rhododendron, White Flowering Shrub

Prized for its strongly-scented flowers and beautiful fall foliage, Rhododendron viscosum, known as Swamp Azalea, is a very appealing native to the swamps of the eastern United States, from Maine to Alabama and westward to Texas. This bushy, medium-sized, deciduous shrub bears funnel-shaped, white flowers, often tinged pink, with long slender tubes. Held in small clusters of 3-12 flowers, they bloom profusely after the leaves emerge in early summer and exude a strong clove-like perfume. The foliage of lustrous, elliptic, dark green leaves turns brilliant shades of yellow, orange, and purple in fall for a great colorful show. Exceptionally cold-hardy, this late-season Azalea can withstand temperatures as low as -20°F (-29°C). A wonderful landscape plant that deserves a place near a patio, deck, or living area, where its delightful fragrance can be enjoyed.

  • Swamp Azalea grows with a loose, upright, spreading habit, up to 5-8 ft. tall (150-240 cm) and 7-10 ft. wide (210-300 cm). Will slowly naturalize by root suckers
  • Recipient of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society
  • A sun to part shade lover, this plant is easily grown in moist, acidic, humusywell-drained soils. This Azalea species tolerates wet soils, including those with poor drainage. While periodic flooding is tolerated, it cannot remain permanently underwater. Prefers a sun-dappled shade or high open part shade. Foliage may scorch in full sun unless soils are kept uniformly moist. Plant shallowly in a location protected from strong winter winds. Protect from frost to prevent damage to flowers. Mulch annually with leaf mold to retain moisture, control weeds, and cool the soil.
  • Perfect for shrub borders or mixed borders and shade gardens. Excellent cut flower too!
  • Attracts butterflies, hummingbirds, and birds.
  • Removing spent flowers promotes new growth.
  • All parts of the plant are poisonous if ingested.
  • Toxic to dogs, toxic to cats, toxic to horses.

Rhododendron and Azalea: How To Grow And Care with Success


Want to learn how to grow and care for rhododendron and azalea flowers like a pro? Follow these simple steps and enjoy their beauty

Requirements

Hardiness 3 - 9
Heat Zones 1 - 9
Climate Zones 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17
Plant Type Shrubs
Plant Family Ericaceae
Genus Rhododendron
Common names Azalea, Swamp Azalea, Rhododendron
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Early)
Fall
Height 5' - 8'
(150cm - 240cm)
Spread 7' - 10'
(210cm - 3m)
Spacing 84" - 120"
(210cm - 3m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Fragrant, Plant of Merit, Showy
Native Plants United States, Maryland, Massachusetts, Maine, New York, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Connecticut, Southeast, Southwest, Northeast, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Rabbit, Wet Soil
Attracts Butterflies, Hummingbirds
Garden Uses Beds And Borders, Patio And Containers
Garden Styles Traditional Garden, Informal and Cottage, City and Courtyard
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Alternative Plants to Consider

Rhododendron Autumn Royalty
Rhododendron macrophyllum (Pacific Rhododendron)
Rhododendron alabamense (Alabama Azalea)
Rhododendron periclymenoides (Pinxterbloom Azalea)
Rhododendron catawbiense (Catawba Rosebay)
Rhododendron maximum (Great Laurel)

Recommended Companion Plants

Brunnera macrophylla ‘Jack Frost’ (Siberian Bugloss)
Matteuccia struthiopteris (Ostrich Fern)
Anemone nemorosa (Wood Anemone)
Hyacinthoides hispanica ‘Excelsior’ (Spanish Bluebells)
Hosta (Plantain Lily)
Hamamelis (Witch Hazel)

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Azaleas and Rhododendrons: What is the Difference?
While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
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Requirements

Hardiness 3 - 9
Heat Zones 1 - 9
Climate Zones 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17
Plant Type Shrubs
Plant Family Ericaceae
Genus Rhododendron
Common names Azalea, Swamp Azalea, Rhododendron
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Early)
Fall
Height 5' - 8'
(150cm - 240cm)
Spread 7' - 10'
(210cm - 3m)
Spacing 84" - 120"
(210cm - 3m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Fragrant, Plant of Merit, Showy
Native Plants United States, Maryland, Massachusetts, Maine, New York, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Connecticut, Southeast, Southwest, Northeast, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Alabama, North Carolina, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Oklahoma, Texas
Tolerance Rabbit, Wet Soil
Attracts Butterflies, Hummingbirds
Garden Uses Beds And Borders, Patio And Containers
Garden Styles Traditional Garden, Informal and Cottage, City and Courtyard
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
Explore Great Plant Combination Ideas
Rhododendron
Guides with
Rhododendron
Not sure which Rhododendron to pick?
Compare Now

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