The Azalea Walk

This noteworthy collection of Azaleas and Rhododendrons is located in the northwest corner of Brookdale Park along the stone wall between the Tennis Center and the Archery Range. Half of the shrubs are native species bringing fragrance along with their vibrant color display each spring.

The Azalea Walk was designed and developed by Brookdale Park Conservancy Co-Chairperson, Yuliya Bellinger. Plants and mulch were generously provided by the Essex County Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs. Soil amendments were purchased through the Conservancy's Annual Fund and labor was organized and provided by Montclair Boy Scout, Thomas Pool as part of his Eagle Scout Project. 

Digital rendering of the Azalea Walk in Brookdale Park at springtime. Project completed in October 2013.

Digital rendering of the Azalea Walk in Brookdale Park at springtime. Project completed in October 2013.

Horticultural Info

The Azalea Walk is comprised of some the following plant species - those marked with an asterisk are considered to be native plants to our area.

  • Coastal Azalea, Rhododendron atlanticum* - view images
    A low growing (3-4'), deciduous and stoloniferous shrub with blue-green foliage. 1-1.5" white fragrant flowers are tinged with pink and appear in mid-May typically before leaves appear. It is native to the coastal plains from New Jersey to Georgia.
  • Florida Azalea, Rhododendron austrinum 'Millie Mac'  - view images
    A large upright (8-10') deciduous shrub with large flower buds which are prominent in the winter and then open to clusters of 18-30 fragrant yellow flowers with white edged petals in April-May. 
  • Flame Azalea, Rhododendron calendulaceum* - view images
    A medium to large sized (6-8') deciduous shrub which display fragrant flowers in late April to early May. Flowers are produced in dense clusters and range in color from pastel orange to dark reddish-orange
  • Pinxterbloom Azalea, Rhododendron periclymenoides* - view images
    A medium sized (4-6') deciduous understory shrub with slightly fragrant light to dark pink flowers opening in late April to early May.
  • Roseshell Azalea, Rhododendron prinophyllum* - view images
    A medium to large sized (4-8') deciduous shrub with intensely fragrant (clove-scented) pink flowers opening in late May. Bright-green foliage turns a yellow-bronze color in fall. 
  • Swamp Azalea, Rhododendron viscosum* - view images
    A medium sized (3-5'), deciduous and stoloniferous shrub that has sticky white flowers with a clove-like fragrance appearing in June and July. 
  • Rhododendron 'Roseum Elegans', Rhododenron x 'Roseum Elgans' - view images
    A medium to large sized (6-8') evergreen shrub with impressive trusses of rose-lilac flowers appearing in May.