Monday, March 28, 2011

"That Red Bush" Or As It is Sometimes Known,The Azalea

Black Swallowtail Butterfly on the Azalea
The Finman has worried this week about the "red bush" in the side yard, "It hasn't bloomed. Everyone else's has bloomed."

I say, "You mean the azalea? It will bloom. Our yard is the coldest on the street." Fin agrees our yard is the coldest on the street. The next morning Finman says, "Why isn't our red bush blooming?" I say, "The azalea? It will bloom. You just have to be patient."

I should mention here that last year the azalea was attacked by caterpillars. As I don't enjoy squishing things and much to Fin's dismay we are very careful in our use of poison the caterpillars were left to frolic and nosh to the best of their abilities. This was VERY disturbing to the Finman. (Let it be known that I consulted a gardener wiser than I and the internet before letting these parasites run amok.)

Apparently, due to the whole caterpillar thing, this spring Fin thinks the "red bush" may be beyond help.  I keep telling him the azalea will bloom. 

And, it has.  It's worth noting here that our azalea does look red while it is budding out but is pink when it blooms.


  1. Caterpillar pruning mayhap? Mum is partial to azaleas and we often get thrips and "rust". I found brewing a pot of water with a splash of dishwashing liquid, 2 onions, the bulbs of a garlic head and 6 tiny red ( ballistic) chillis boiled for a while then strained and decanted with 1 part distillate to 10 parts water and put in a misting bottle works a treat for a natural pest deterrent. Works on citrus, fruit trees and andy flowering plants or veges without any toxicity.

    Every plant has it's own season.

  2. You two sound like K and I. K is all for the "natural" way of pest management while I subscribe to "Better living through chemistry". (I never was very PC.)

    Glad to hear the blooms are doing fine. :)


  3. Maggs, I have a very similar concoction that I make. I failed to make any last year but definitely will this year. That stuff is wonderful! The only difference I see in our recipes is that mine uses paprika instead of the small red chillis. Of course, that amounts to the same thing. I have some dried chilles in the cabinet, I may throw those in, instead. :)

    Yes Scott, that's exactly how it is. Poor Fin, he wants to use gasoline on the fire ants. Isn't it sad that I thwart all his plans?

  4. We actually have an Azalea festival here. My wife was an attendant years ago.

  5. LOL, gasoline on the fire ants! He must have moved beyond the boiling water bath.

  6. Love your butterfly on the "red bush" btw.

  7. To Bethany and Fragilewisdom,--Your father espouses the gasaline cure, only he laments the passing of the custom. He says he used to do that to the red ants in almost West Texas. Now we know what happened to the red ants. Mom

  8. I love azaleas and it is never really Spring in the deep south without them. Mom has been sending me pictures of the front yard of the azaleas in full bloom.

    I miss the South :)

  9. Hey Wiz, You and Marcel should come visit one time in the spring so you can show him all the Azaleas. Maybe go to Bellengrath Gardens.


Please play nicely.