Identification: Rhododendron praevernum

Discussion in 'Ericaceae (rhododendrons, arbutus, etc.)' started by Margot, Mar 24, 2020.

  1. Margot

    Margot Well-Known Member

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    After many years, my Rhododendron praevernum is finally starting to bloom . . . at least I think it is R. praevernum. While looking for more info about this species, I found Daniel Mosquin's Botany Photo of the Day from March 2014 (photo attached) showing it with a large blotch. Mine (second attachment) has no blotch at all so I wonder if this is normal variablity or if my rhodo is not R. praevernum after all.

    Ron B commented to D. Mosquin's Botany Photo of the Day:
    Some collections – for instance the Kruckeberg Botanic Garden, Shoreline, WA, where I have identified multiple examples of it – contain the hybrid between R. praevernum and R. sutchuenense Franchet, called R. x geraldii (Hutchinson) Ivens. Probably in most of these instances the hybrid plants were raised (and may continue to be displayed as) R. sutchuenense. But the hybrid plants can be easily told by their combining the blotched corollas of R. praevernum with the hairy midribs on the undersides of the leaves of R. sutchuenense – true R. sutchuenense produces corollas entirely without basal blotches.

    Good information but I'm still confused.
     

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  2. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Esteemed Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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  3. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    If your rhododendron was raised from open pollinated seed produced in a cultivated setting it could be a hybrid of unknown parentage, that won't match exactly any descriptions of wild rhododendron species. Otherwise I would suggest looking at any serious written descriptions of Rhododendron praevernum and allied species you can get access to at this time to see how the relevant morphological details of your plant compare.
     
  4. Margot

    Margot Well-Known Member

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    From what you say, I think it is possible that my rhodo is a hybrid. I bought it about a dozen years ago from a man who used to work for a rhododendron propagation company, so he said. It was already getting big and confined to a pot. Thanks for your suggestions.
     

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