Rhododendron calendulaceum - Flame Azalea
Flame Azalea is prized for its spectacular spring flowers. Large blossoms are held in groups of 5 or more, and bloom in shades of yellow, orange, and red. Attracts butterflies, bees, and other beneficial insects. In the fall the foliage takes on subtle tones of yellow and red. Be patient, this azalea needs a little time to become established but it is worth the wait. This shrub has an upright habit and is tolerant of dry soils. Needs a few hours of direct sun per day.
- Spring flower bloom in bright shades of yellow, orange and red
- The flowers are bigger than most native azaleas
- Attracts butterflies, bees and other beneficial insects
- Tolerates dry conditions
- Great for naturalistic landscapes
Found on rocky, mountain woods and heath balds.
Map Credit: The Biota of North America
Map Key: Green (native), Teal (native, adventive), Blue (present), Yellow (present & rare), Red (extinct)
Since butterflies are cold-blooded animals, they can't regulate their own body temperatures. The surrounding air temperature has a big impact on their ability to function. If the air temperature falls below 55ºF, butterflies are rendered immobile, unable to flee from predators or feed.
Ideally, azaleas like morning sun and filtered shade during the hottest part of the day. They can tolerate more sun if moisture is available. They prefer evenly moist yet well-drained soil, making them perfect for a woodland slope where the water would drain well. Rhododendrons and azaleas need slightly acidic soil that is rich in organic matter. Mulching helps keep the soil cool and moist. Prune after flowering if needed. This flame azalea will tolerate dry conditions.