Early ‘late’ flowering Rhododendron

While the rest of the world tips into winter, here we have just endured a record breaking heatwave.

Last Sunday we reached 34°C/93°F, smashing the old record of 33°C/91°F to become our new hottest day ever…(the day-time average here at this time of year is 19°C/66°F)

So, after a warm October, a warm November and then a heat wave, the garden thinks it’s in summer!

I know that many readers in the western parts of the UK will be horrified to see a post about Rhododendron ponticum given how weedy it is in that part of the country, but here it is only moderately inclined to self-seed.

Normally, this would be in flower around Christmas, but this year it is a month early. I love its pale purple blooms: but you can see how warm it has been by the substantial amounts of new growth…

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Rhododendron ponticum

Certainly, whatever your experience with this plant, it is hard to deny the joy that the last of the Rhododendrons bring as the garden signals the change to hot weather…

Happy Gardening 🙂

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5 thoughts on “Early ‘late’ flowering Rhododendron

    • Thanks! I’ve been selectively pruning it this last year to try and stop it from getting taller than the house (I don’t want it becoming tree-like as the shade under Rhododendrons is very dense). But it is very healthy – this was one of the original plants in the garden, so it had been neglected for at least 30 years

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    • Thanks – the weather has been warm these last two months. Even though monthly averages of 59F and 64F don’t sound hot, these are typical summer averages for us! These Rhododendrons can easily turn into medium sized trees, but it is a beauty. This one is the size of the house already, so I have been gently pruning it back to maintain it as a very tall (15′-20′) shrub.

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