In a Vase on Monday: Azalea Buds

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Azalea buds in March in a vintage apothecary bottle

Today’s “In a Vase on Monday” features pink azalea buds clipped from one my drought survivors.

During the 2016-17 drought in the Southeastern U.S., I felt sure the beautifully green city of Birmingham, and perhaps the whole state of Alabama, was on its way to becoming a dust bowl. Everything, even the most established trees, looked parched. When there was the slightest hint of a storm brewing, all we got was clouds, wind, a few drops of rain, and whirls and whirls of dust.

Like many people, we lost quite a bit of landscaping, including all the azaleas across the front of our house. (They were planted there by the previous owner, and it was an ill-advised location. Too much sun.)

However, spring 2017 graced us with lots and lots of rain, helping our trees and shrubs recover. But during that first year, the drought’s toll was still apparent.

Azalea bloom in March
One lone bloom near the ground has opened. I can’t wait till the whole bush is in full bloom for the first time in two years.

Though we lost all the azaleas in our front yard, the three in our backyard, protected by plenty of shade, survived. However, they did not bloom in spring 2017 when the rain returned. Similarly, my holly bushes did not put out berries in fall 2016. Everything was in survival and recovery mode.

Happily, fall 2017 saw the return of holly berries to feed the birds and squirrels, and spring 2018 has brought the return of azalea buds to our backyard. I can’t wait until the bushes explode with flowers.

The vase at the top of this post is a vintage apothecary bottle from my hometown of Augusta, Georgia. The writing on the bottle reads, “744 Broad St., Cabaniss Drug Co., Augusta, GA.” (Speaking of Augusta, if you want to see some stunning azaleas, even if you’re not a golf fan, tune in to the upcoming Master’s Golf Tournament!)

Thanks to Cathy and her blog, Rambling in the Garden, for starting the IAVOM meme. It’s helped me connect to other garden bloggers and makes blogging much more enjoyable. Be sure to visit her blog and see all the comments below her post to get a peek at what gardeners around the world have put in a vase on Monday.

Author: Terri Robertson

I am a freelance writer, editor and creative concept developer. I'm also a novice gardener who creates arrangements using cuttings and plants from my yard, vintage containers, and found objects both natural and manmade.

15 thoughts on “In a Vase on Monday: Azalea Buds”

  1. Thanks for sharing your precious bloom, Terri and I am pleased to read that so many of your trees and shrubs are recovereing after the mixed weather of the last couple of years. The Golfer will not surpringly be watching the Masters on televsion when he can so I shall make sure he calls me in when they show shots of the azaleas instead of the golf – thanks for alerting me and thanks for joining in ps the link to this post wasn’t quite right so I will put the correct one into the comment you left instead

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  2. Did you buy the bottle in Augusta or Birmingham? At first glance I thought I was reading Canabiss drug company on the bottle but, at second glance, I was relieved to find it read Cabaniss. Nice photo and write-up. Rich

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  3. How wonderful that the Azalea survived your drought! They’re tougher than they look. I had the very same ‘George Tabor’ Azalea in my former shady garden and, though it always bloomed there, the extended drought here led me to forego planting it in my current garden when we moved. Azaleas do want regular water!

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    1. Yes, it was a learning experience, as painful as it was. Aside from one cotoneaster parneyi, I’m still considering what shrubs to put in our full-sun front beds to replace what we lost. In the meantime, I am focusing on sun-loving perennials whose flowers will attract pollinators. I cannot wait to read more about your garden in Lazio.

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  4. When we moved in, I ‘encouraged’ various plants to move on and make space. Invasive alien trees removed by the garden service. Eternally thirsty Impatiens! And window boxes, on the all day sun side, in the teeth of the Southeaster – zone denial with a vengeance.

    I have a tiny medicine bottle we dug up in our Porterville garden, later we found its glass stopper.

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