In praise of the rhododendron

The rhododendron is a wonderful plant for the idle gardener. Once it is established it does not need any special attention and produces an abundant show of flowers each year. My rhododendrons are in full bloom at the moment and are a wonderful sight. The huge flowers are magnificent, especially when viewed close up. Here are some pictures I took in my garden recently.

Rhododendron flower.
Insects like rhododendron flowers.

The name rhododendron comes from the Greek with rodi meaning “rose”, and dendron, meaning “tree”. It is a genus of flowering plants in the family Ericaceae and there are over 1000 species. The Ericaceae family includes the plants known to gardeners as azaleas. It is the national flower of Nepal, the State flower of Uttrakhand, India and the State Flower of both West Virginia and Washington in the USA.