Rhododendrons Need Few Words

Starting in April, rhododendrons and azaleas seem to dominate the landscape in the Pacific Northwest. It is easy to see why this diverse group has become a favorite in many gardens. Here in Washington State we have gone a step further by making the Pacific rhododendron (Rhododendron macrophyllum) our state flower.

Most rhododendrons grow in climates with moderate temperatures, and considerable rainfall. Rhodys also do well in soil that is slightly acidic. This allows rhododendrons to thrive in the Pacific Northwest as well as the west coasts of Britain and Scotland.

So without further loquaciousness, I will allow the rhododendrons to speak for themselves…

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8 Responses to Rhododendrons Need Few Words

  1. montucky says:

    Great photos! Without a doubt they are among the most beautiful flowers.


  2. I love rhodys and azaleas and have a yard full of them. They are doing exceptionally well this year and are loaded with blossoms.


  3. Bruce Hagen says:

    Beautiful, simply beautiful!. Rhodies are indeed one of my favorite flowering plants. They do best in partial shade and soils rich in organic matter. Ample soil moisture is important, but good drainage is a must. Yes, they do like acid soils, but high rainfall areas like the Northwest typically have low soil pH or acid soils due tot leaching of elements such as calcium and magnesium that increase pH,. Soils in arid areas such as the Southwest are alkaline (high pH). Needless to say, you too see many rhodies in Tucson. Oh well! but they have their ‘star’ plants that thrive in the heat, drought and alkaline soils. In Northern California, we typically recommend planting rhodies and azaleas in 100 percent composed wood chips. I’ve planted them above ground in a 8- to 10- inch layer of composted woody material and they done well. We have to contend with deer in much of California, so rhodies, which are deer-resistant, are the best bet unless you fence off the area.


  4. Paula B says:

    Gorgeous! Added to my plant wishlist. 😀


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