Rhododendron and Azalea

The genus, Rhododendron, has over 900 different species and probably 10,000 named cultivars. They range in size from a few inches tall to giants reaching 80 feet in the air. There are both deciduous and evergreen rhododendrons. Most commonly, their flowers are in shades of white, pink, red, lavender, or purple and various bicolor types.

PGC-S-Rhododendron-Azalea-Aglo-07A point of confusion often arises over the term "azalea". The key to remember is that all Azaleas are part of the genus, Rhododendron. Again, there are both deciduous and evergreen plants in both category of rhododendrons.

Plant experts debate over what exactly differentiates an azalea from a rhododendron. Some look at the number of anthers in the flowers but I use a simpler classification system. To me, azaleas are just rhododendrons that bear their flowers all along the stems while rhododendrons produce their blossoms at the terminal end of branches.

Members of this genus tend to have exacting requirements in terms of site, soil and climate.

Care and Culture of Rhododendrons








R. arborescens Sweet Azalea
R. arboreum Tree Rhododendron
R. calendulaceum Flame Azalea
R. canadense  
R. carolinianum Carolina Rhododendron
R. catawbiense Catawba Rhododendron
R. x 'Exbury Hybrids' Exbury Hybrid Azalea
R. 'Gable Hybrids' Gable Hybrid Azaleas
R. x gandavense Ghent Hybrid Azalea
R. japponicum Lapland Rhododendron
R. kaempferi Torch or Kaempfer Azalea
R. x 'Knap Hill Hybrids' Knap Hill Hybrid Azalea
R. x kosteranum Mollis Azaleas
R. macrophyllum Big Leaf Rhododendron
R. maximum Rosebay Rhododendron
R. moupinense  
R. mucronulatum Korean Rhododendron
R. 'P.J.M. Hybrids' P.J.M. Hybrid Rhododendron
R. racemosum  
R. schlippenbachii Royal Azalea
R. vaseyi Pink Shell Azalea
R. viscosum Swamp Azalea
R. yakusimanum Yakusimanum Rhododendron


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