Fertilizing on a Slope

Q:I would like to fertilize young azaleas on a sloping bank next to a pond. How do I do it without creating algae-filled water as I did last year? When is best?

A: Azaleas don’t really need a lot of fertilizer but if you want them to get bigger, you can poke 1/2″ diameter holes three inches deep in the ground and fill each one with Milorganite fertilizer. You’ll need 3 – 6 holes per plant, depending on size. Use a rebar rod to make the holes on a day after it has rained, when the soil is soft. Not much fertilizer will wash out of the holes and the job only needs doing once a year.

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