Azaleas are a perfect indoor flowering plant this time of year. They require very little care and can last several weeks or more.
Chester’s Flower Shop in Utica has some beautiful colors available right now. These plants were brought in late December from the West Coast and potted right here in Chester’s greenhouses. Here we keep most of the crop cool, so they don’t all flower too soon. We warm a small quantity weekly, and within 20-30 days they are showing color.
Once in the home, just water them when they are dry. Fill the pot with water, and let it run through the drainage holes into a saucer. Dump any extra standing water out so the plant is not continuosly sitting in water.
Azaleas can tolerate cool temperatures – even down into the low 30’s. The cooler they are kept, the longer they will stay in bloom. In the home, try to keep them away from extremely warm areas for best results.
The perfect time to get an azalea is when the flowers are just starting to open and there are plenty of buds showing color, but even a wide open azalea can last quite a long time.
Unfortunately these plants are not the “hardy” varieties you see in local landscape nurseries. They can be planted outside in the spring, but the chances of them wintering over are slim in Central NY.
Visit Chester’s Greenhouses to see flowering azaleas, or many other flowering and tropical plants.