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Shrub or small tree to 6 m, terrestrial, sometimes epiphytic; young stems finely scaly and minutely white-hairy. Leaves 1.5-3.5 x 0.5-1.3 cm, narrowly elliptic, elliptic, obovate or spathulate, the apex obtuse, rounded, often retuse, the margin strongly reflexed sometimes almost revolute, the base narrowly to broadly tapering; upper surface finely silvery or brown-scaly, the midrib impressed, the laterals 1-3 pairs mostly obscure; lower surface with the midrib strongly, weakly or hardly raised, the laterals smooth, the scales well spaced, circular or slightly lobed with small to large centres. Flowers 1-4 per umbel, half hanging to vertically hanging; calyx a low scaly and/or hairy disc; corolla red, cylindrical, 1.3-2.5 x 0.8-1.4 cm, usually scaly and laxly hairy outside, sometimes scaly only; stamens 10, mostly irregularly arranged in the mouth of the flower sometimes roughly grouped on the lower side; ovary scaly only, the style glabrous. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)
Distribution Indonesia possibly also in Celebes Philippines widespread
Habitat 1,000-2,500 m
RHS Hardiness Rating H2
Conservation status Least concern (LC)
Bornean specimens are now all attributable to other species (see Rhododendrons of Sabah 1988, G. Argent, A. Lamb, A. Phillipps & S. Collenette, Sabah Parks Publication No. 8). A variable species with different forms coming from the different mountain groups in the Philippines, the most commonly cultivated form is var. rosmarinifolium (Vidal) Copel.f. with elongate-obovate leaves, with pedicels pubescent and scaly and corolla up to 1.5cm long. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)