Kindly sponsored by
Peter Norris, enabling the use of The Rhododendron Handbook 1998
New article for Trees and Shrubs Online.
'Rhododendron rhodoleucum' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.
Erect shrub to 4 m usually terrestrial, young stems with scattered scales at first. Leaves 3-7 x 2-6 cm, elliptic, broadly elliptic or slightly obovate-elliptic, the apex shortly and broadly attenuate to a mostly obtuse point, occasionally rounded, the margin entire and flat, the base strongly to weakly cordate; the upper surface at first with rather smooth silvery scales, quickly glabrescent, the midrib slightly impressed above, widening abruptly to the petiole near the base, the laterals 6-8 irregular pairs with other smaller but distinct ones between, all slightly raised; the lower surface with the midrib only very slightly raised but the laterals finely but distinctly so, scales rather widely spaced, small, flat and irregularly lobed. Flowers 4-6 per umbel, half hanging; calyx indistinctly five-lobed, slightly scaly; corolla mostly red at the base, fading to pink upwards and with white lobes but quite variable in the intensity of the pigmentation, beautifully scented, long-tubular, with a straight or more usually slightly curved tube, 6-8 x 2.5-3.5 cm, slightly scaly outside; stamens 10, rather irregularly exserted from the mouth; ovary densely covered with appressed hairs and scales, the style also hairy and scaly in the lower 2/3. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)
Distribution Papua New Guinea Maneau Range in the Milne Bay Province
Habitat 2,200-2,800 m
RHS Hardiness Rating H2
Conservation status Least concern (LC)
See remarks under R. tuba for differences between this species and the most closely related ones. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)