George R Stilwell, Jr.
grsjr at JUNO.COM
Thu Jul 10 22:39:01 CEST 1997
Sorry to hear the sad tale. No wonder you're disappointed after doing all
Do the raised beds subsoil have a slope to promote good drainage and are
low-end edges open to water passage? If so, there's not much more you can
do. It's interesting that tubers that wintered over in the ground fared
better than the ones that were planted in the spring.
I guess I subscribe to the Joe Gable (the famous Rhododendron/Azalea
hybridizer) school of thought. He put his new creations out in the woods
with no special care. The ones that survived were evaluated for their
other characteristics, named, propagated and introduced. If you have to
baby it, forget it was his motto.
However, I've grown Rhododendron here in the much-to-hot piedmont of
North Carolina for 18 years. I have to use raised pine bark/sand beds,
drip irrigation, and soil chemicals to retard root rot, so I too succumb
to the beauty of the plant. Right now I'm loosing one of five 'Gomer
Waterer' to root rot even with all the precautions. They've grown
luxuriantly for 15 years and I got a bit lax and stopped the soil
drenches. There's no saving this one, but I have to get going in hopes of
saving the others.
Let me know how the A. sikokianum made out.
<GRSJr at Juno.com>
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