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This is not really about Rhody, the terrier whom I work for. I just threw that extra picture in because, if you know who Rhody is, you were expecting to see his picture after reading the title. The six pictures below are really just rhododendrons that were blooming last week.

Last year was the best bloom of rhododendrons and azaleas in many years here. Those who have known them for many years can not remember a more spectacular bloom, with so many of different cultivars of the rhododendrons blooming so profusely in the same season.

The bloom this year is unusually sparse. No one can explain it. They have good years and bad years, just like anything else in the garden. Fortunately, even in their bad years, the flowers that bloom are spectacular.

1. Of the six this week, this is my least favorite. It is a vary pale pink, but not pale enough to be white. There are not many florets on the trusses.P90504

2. I refer to this one as ‘Taurus’; but I really do not know what it is. ‘Taurus’ is very susceptible to thrip. This one sustains only minor damage from thrip, while a few others nearby are are seriously damaged.P90504+

3. This one may not look much better than #1, but the color is pinker, and the trusses are impressively big with more florets when it is in full bloom. It grows as a tree nearly twenty feet tall.P90504++

4. I refer to this one as ‘Anah Kruschke’, but like for #2 above and #5 below, I am not sure about its identity. ‘Anah Kruschke’ should not be damaged by thrip as badly as this one is. I think my colleague grew this one.P90504+++

5. Of the three here that I have names for, this is the one that is most certainly not what I like to think it is. ‘Helene Schiffner’, which happens to be one of my favorites, is not blushed with yellow.P90504++++

6. I believe that my esteemed colleague grew this one as well as #4. I remember delivering a significant order of rhododendrons here years ago, at about the same time this and #4 were installed.P90504+++++

This is the link for Six on Saturday, for anyone else who would like to participate:

https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/2017/09/18/six-on-saturday-a-participant-guide/

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31 thoughts on “Six on Saturday: Rhody!!

    1. Most were planted long before my time. Most of those in the pictures are on the bank of a creek that flows through where I work. The creek is from a spring, so it flows all year. I would guess that whomever planned the landscape intended for the rhododendrons to stay lower than they are, but they are now big enough to obscure the view over the landscape from the outside. It might have been better if they had stayed lower, but they are spectacular as big as they are. From inside the landscape, they are on the far bank, so it works out quite well, and the only view that is obscured from within is that of the road and buildings across the road, so it works out nicely. It is an informal woodland landscape. The smaller rhododendrons that were added more recently were those that my colleague grew.

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      1. Not acid enough? Wow; I grew some in the Santa Clara Valley, right in the ground. They grow in parts of Los Angeles too. The soil is too alkaline for blue hydrangeas.

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      1. Oh yes, that is a concern. That is why they do not do so well in Santa Clara, Sunnyvale, or elsewhere too close to the San Francisco Bay. They ‘can’ do well, but want a lot of soil amendment.

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  1. Just love all the rhodys, but first on my list is your boss & 2nd is Helene. Really like that yellow blush. Like the pink ones, too, but the yellow is simply lovely.

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    1. Yes, Rhody really is the best. ‘Helene Schiffner’ really should be pure white, without the yellow blush, so I don’t know what cultivar this one is. It could be that it is just a bit discolored. Normally, ‘Helene Schiffner’ is one of my favorites for the clear white color. However, the plants are rather grungy looking and sparsely foliated, which is what these plants look like.

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    1. Really? I think the names are funny; like two angry German girls and my old station wagon. These are some of the more tolerable names though, compared to ‘Pillow Party’ or ‘Teddy Bear’. Those are difficult to say with any degree of seriousness.

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      1. Thrip do not really munch. They just rasp the foliage and make it silvery or gray. They can disfigure foliage of many plants, but for rhododendrons, they just make the foliage unsightly.

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    1. They are more of a problem on the farm, where even slightly damaged plants are not saleable. They are much more tolerable in the landscape, as long as they do not cause too much damage. Right now, they are causing too much damage.

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    1. The plant that provided that bloom is the most impressive. It is nearly twenty feet tall. It is located next to a small pedestrian bridge over a creek, so it is colorful down below the bridge, and about ten feet above. It was so heavy with bloom last year that I needed to tie it up to sturdier trunks until it finished and I could prune it. Although it is pretty, most prefer the fuzzy Rhody in the unnumbered picture at the top.

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  2. Your least favourite is my favourite! But a close second is number 5. I have a huge and very common rhodie which doesn’t flower until end of May. I’m wishing it was more like the ones you’ve shared. Cute dog too!

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    1. “DOG”?!?! He prefers the title of ‘Emperor’. He certainly is cute, and he knows how to work it.
      Anyway, #5 really does look good in this picture. However, the plant is not so pretty, with grungy and sparse foliage; and it is so tall that most of the bloom is above view. I really believe that it is ‘Helene Schiffner’, even though it is so blushed with yellow. I have not seen others with so much yellow, but I know it is possible. All the other ‘unpleasant’ characteristics are there. It is still one of my favorites nonetheless. My least favorite is a much better looking plant, with fuller light green foliage. Also, the floral trusses are normally quite big and open, like a rhododendrons flower should be.

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    1. We do not; and I can not think of any that are grown more for foliage than flowers. ‘President Roosevelt’ has nicely variegated foliage (although unvariegated ‘green’ shoots sometimes need to be pruned out to maintain variegation). ‘Sappho’ has narrow leaves like those of oleander. There are a few rhododendrons with huge leaves and small flowers, but we do not grow them. There may be cultivars that are popular in other regions that are grown more for foliage, but I am not familiar with them.

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