Kindly sponsored by
Peter Norris, enabling the use of The Rhododendron Handbook 1998
New article for Trees and Shrubs Online.
'Rhododendron christi' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.
Shrub to 1.2 m, usually epiphytic, twigs at first with a covering of brown scales which quickly fall off. Leaves 4-9 x 2-6 cm, ovate, the apex acute and sometimes shortly attenuate, the margin flat or slightly revolute, the base rounded to cordate; upper surface very quickly glabrous, clearly reticulate, the midrib impressed, lateral veins 4-6 pairs only minutely impressed; underneath the midrib strongly raised and often coloured red, the laterals distinct but hardly raised, scales well spaced, disc-shaped or irregularly lobed with small centres. Flowers 1-4 per umbel, hanging diagonally to vertically downwards; calyx a low lobed ring; corolla bicoloured with a yellow tube and orange lobes, cylindrical, the tube slightly curved, 3-3.5 x 3.5-4 cm, with distinct white hairs outside; stamens 10, spread round the upper half of the mouth of the flower, ovary hairy, the style hairy nearly to the top. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)
Distribution Papua New Guinea Widespread from Irian Jaya to Papua New Guinea
Habitat 1,200-3,000 m
RHS Hardiness Rating H2
Taxonomic note Orthographic variant: R. christi Foerster. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)
This delightful and easily grown species occurs in two forms in cultivation, one with large leaves and the other more delicate and smaller, the flowers of both however are very similar, forms with pink flowers are usually considered hybrids particularly with R. beyerinckianum. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)