It wouldn’t be spring in Houston without azaleas. I currently have three varieties in my yard and will soon be adding at least three more. Now that my arm is mostly recovered from my bout of tennis elbow I am anxious to get back to work in my yard. All my tender shrubs which survived for the past decade were decimated during this unusually cold winter. I will be replanting my hibiscus (gotta have hibiscus!), but mostly I will be planting things that can take our summer heat AND an occasional deep freeze. I still like to work in my yard a little bit every day, but these days writing takes up most of my time, so I want plants that don’t need much pampering. Azaleas fit the bill. And the new Encore varieties make enjoying them even better because we get more than one season’s worth of blooms.