My azalea looks sick. Leaves, even new ones, are getting brownish spots and droopy. I planted it a month ago in a pot and roots still didn't spread out. I think they look mushy. When I took azalea out of the pot, roots are still the shape they used to be in a shop's pot, before I replanted it. Also, I find sometimes small white balls in the roots, which after squeezing release some watery substance. What to do? Help.
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
If the roots are mushy, this is a sign of root rot. This article may help (https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/plant-problems/disease/treating-root-rot-gardening-tips-for-housplants.htm), but with azaleas, it may be a more damaging form called phytophthora root rot (https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/shrubs/azalea/phytophthora-root-rot-azaleas.htm).
The white balls are simply fertilizer. The nursery adds these time release capsules to the soil to eventually break down and fertilize the plants.