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 at 1:16 AM
  4. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Flowers needed
     

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