FRONT LINES
5/1/2018

New Encore Addition

Ellen C. Wells
Nothing says spring to me more than blooming azaleas. But don’t forget that the Encore Azalea line offers reblooming plants, so you get that spring feeling all season long. The breeder behind the Encore line, Robert Lee of Plant Development Services Inc., has released a new variety called Autumn Bonfire. As the name suggests, its blooms are red—a nice contrast to its bright evergreen foliage.

Autumn Bonfire is a dwarf variety that grows into a 3-ft. mound. It also requires very little maintenance and is one of the most cold-tolerant azaleas out there, as are the Encores as a whole. And according to Robert, this variety is more free-blooming, readily re-blooming if in the right location—which means direct morning sunlight or bright shade. With Autumn Bonfire, the Encore line is now up to 31 varieties. GP