Identification: Rhododendron with striking red leaf budscales

Discussion in 'Ericaceae (rhododendrons, arbutus, etc.)' started by wcutler, May 21, 2020.

  1. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I am enamoured of this rhododendron and I don't even know what the flowers are like, and the leaves are not that special, thought there does seem to be nice white indumentum, which I am noticing for the first time in the photos. But it has these great red things that I see I called "leaf buds" on a UBCBG rhodo posting one year. These are leaf budscales? Surely this is distinctive enough that an ID would be possible?
    Rhododendron-redthings_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20200521_151346.jpg
    Rhododendron-redthings_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20200521_151206.jpg
    Rhododendron-redthings_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20200521_151252.jpg Rhododendron-redthings_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20200521_151206r.jpg Rhododendron-redthings_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20200521_151313.jpg
     
  2. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Here are two more photos of this tree.
    Rhododendron-redthings_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20200524_170154.jpg Rhododendron-redthings_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20200524_170230.jpg

    I found a posting of what looks the same, but no name.
    Rhdodendron Bud Scales Photo - Royalty Free Rhododendron Species Stock Image CFGec51.jpg

    I found a posting that looks similar, with the name Rhododendron decorum. That is a blog for May 2018, with white flowers. There was no sign of flowers on the Stanley Park tree - I can't tell if I'm very late or too early or it's just not planning to flower, but the May flowering makes me think it should not be the same.
    Garden Blogger's Bloom Day May 2018

    I found other photos of R. decorum with much shorter leaves rounded at the tip, so that also makes me think this is not the right ID.
     
  3. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I see I have posted Rhododendron kesangiae at UBCBG, has bud scales like this tree, had no sign of flowers in May, 2013, but the leaves on that look more coarse, darker, more curled at the edges.
    May 16, 2013 - Decorative leaves
    File:Rhododendron kesangiae - Hillier Gardens - Romsey, Hampshire, England - DSC04779.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

    Also, there is R. sinofalconeri: May in the Garden - great new leaves. Pretty much the same comments apply. I have no idea how I would distinguish those two without seeing the yellow flowers on this, purple flowers on the kesangiae..
    File:Rhododendron sinofalconeri - RHS Garden Harlow Carr - North Yorkshire, England - DSC01337.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

    I just saw a Facebook posting with these. Clearly, red bud scales are not such a distinguishing feature.

    Rhododendron pronum. Leaf edges too curled.
    Is this a link people can see?
    Kurt Hansen

    R. smithii. Too hairy.
    Kurt Hansen

    Rhododendron X bathyphyllum. Too much tomentum?
    Kurt Hansen
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2020
  4. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Flowers needed
     
  5. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Well, I was so surprised when I realised (not to mention remembered) that this was the tree I was so interested in last year, and I was surprised to find that it looks like this. Nothing I mentioned above would be in the running for this tree with bright red flowers. And what are those red things that attracted me in my first posting? I don't see anything now that will turn into something that looks like those. I thought they would be more distinctive than the flowers.

    I could use a link to identification of rhododendron parts - I keep seeing terms I don't understand and structures I don't understand.

    Anyway, here are these red flowers that don't look very distinctive at all to me. In the habit photo in the first posting, there is a low plant to the left that seems to have flowers just like these, but that photo was taken on May 21; it doesn't have flowers now.
    Rhododendron-redthings-RedFlowers_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20210401_160640.jpg Rhododendron-redthings-RedFlowers_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20210401_160702.jpg Rhododendron-redthings-RedFlowers_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20210401_160716.jpg Rhododendron-redthings-RedFlowers_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20210401_160737.jpg Rhododendron-redthings-RedFlowers_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20210401_160756.jpg Rhododendron-redthings-RedFlowers_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20210401_160855.jpg Rhododendron-redthings-RedFlowers_StanleyParkLagoonDr_Cutler_20210401_160930.jpg
     
  6. Nik

    Nik Rising Contributor

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    Something closely related to Rhododendron barbatum ? Or a hybrid...
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2021
  7. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    See if 'Taurus' is listed for the collection. I have a couple of these here at my new place, the one framed from inside the house by my living room window is about 15 ft. across. In flower your mystery plant is quite close, may be a sister seedling if not the same clone that got named and distributed.
     
  8. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Today I saw they have your same kind labeled 'Cornubia' at Meerkerk. Same everything, including the trunk, bark and leaves. Same everything at this time anyway - haven't seen the new growth.

    The leaves were a problem with it being 'Taurus', close enough to suggest it but otherwise not a tight fit.
     
  9. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    That's great, Ron. Thank you. I see that I posted 'Cornubia' from UBCBG at (2) February 22, 2018 - February in the Garden | UBC Botanical Garden Forums, so if I ever find that plant again in May, I can check for the red things. Budscales, I said, in the subject line. So these must be leaf bud scales? And there are not new leaves yet and that's why I don't see anything now that looks like that? Is there a different term for leaf bud scales and flower bud scales?

    Douglas Justice's blog that month said " ‘Cornubia is a 1912-hybrid of R. arboreum and R. ‘Shilsonii’ ".
     
  10. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I see there is a Botany Photo of the Day on 'Cornubia': Rhododendron ‘Cornubia’ | Botany Photo of the Day (ubc.ca).
    UBCBG Garden Explorer has it listed as Cornubia Group. Rhododendron Cornubia Group | UBC Botanical Garden. No photos of the red things are included.

    With it being considered a group, I wonder if the plant I posted at Identification: - Ted and Mary Greig Rhododendron Garden - unknowns for ID fits this ID. I added more photos for that plant in the same thread at Identification: - Ted and Mary Greig Rhododendron Garden - unknowns for ID.
     

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