The rhododendron is unbelievably gorgeous when in full bloom, ranking at the top of most people’s Top 10 list of favorite shrubs. It’s seldom mentioned, but the rhododendron expresses its personality on bitterly cold days. Its leaves curl in as though each leaf is trying to hug itself to stay warm.
One lady had rhododendrons growing by her front steps. When she reluctantly walked out all bundled up on very cold days, she’d look at her favorite “rhodos” and say, “I completely agree. It’s much, much too cold today.”
Rhododendron: Ancient Destroyer of Armies
The first recorded mention of rhododendrons was 401 B.C. in present-day Turkey. When Xenophon was retreating from Babylon, his starving soldiers eagerly discovered and ate enormous quantities of honey made from the poisonous nectar of the yellow Rhododendron luteum, becoming very ill. Similar disasters happened to the Roman general Pompey and the legendary Alexander the Great. The moral seems to be, “Rhododendrons are for looking, not for eating.”
Hedges and Flowering Borders
Rhododendron grows primarily in the northern hemisphere, particularly North America, Europe and Asia. It has been a garden mainstay for hundreds of years. Larger varieties work very well as hedges or at the rear of borders. In the spring, they are covered by splendid flowers in white, pink, yellow, red and purple. As summer heats up, rhododendron plants sold in NJ function beautifully as great backdrops for flowering annuals and perennials.
Marvelous Accent Plants
Rhododendron plants really come into their own as accent plants. It’s hard to pick one as more beautiful than the next. But Monrovia’s Anna Rose Whitney Rhododendron deserves a featured place in your garden. The large trusses of pink blooms are shaded from light pink to deep magenta. They’re perfectly set off by the evergreen leaves.
Rhododendron plants sold in NJ and elsewhere will live for many years with normal care. So it makes sense to buy the varieties that you really love even if they cost more. As the plant grows into its mature splendor, you’ll be grateful that you chose it.
Pantano Nursery in Manalapan Township, NJ offers only top quality rhododendron plants from Monrovia. Discount plants are a waste of money and time. Whether you want to do it all yourself or have a professional’s assistance in creating the landscape you’ve dreamed of, Brian and the rest of the Pantano team are happy to assist with your next job.