Rhododendron anthosphaerum Diels

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Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles

Recommended citation
'Rhododendron anthosphaerum' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/rhododendron/rhododendron-anthosphaerum/). Accessed 2021-04-14.



  • Rhododendron eritimum Balf. f. & W. W. Sm.
  • Rhododendron chawchiense Balf. f. & Farrer
  • Rhododendron gymnogynum Balf. f. & Forr.
  • Rhododendron heptamerum Balf. f.
  • Rhododendron persicinum Hand.-Mazz.

Other taxa in genus


(pl. calyces) Outer whorl of the perianth. Composed of several sepals.
The inner whorl of the perianth. Composed of free or united petals often showy.
Lowest part of the carpel containing the ovules; later developing into the fruit.
Sharply pointed.
(pl. apices) Tip. apical At the apex.
Lacking hairs smooth. glabrescent Becoming hairless.
Bearing glands.
Lance-shaped; broadest in middle tapering to point.
Inversely lanceolate; broadest towards apex.
Generally an elongated structure arising from the ovary bearing the stigma at its tip.


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Article from Bean's Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles

Recommended citation
'Rhododendron anthosphaerum' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/rhododendron/rhododendron-anthosphaerum/). Accessed 2021-04-14.

Shrub or small tree, 3-12 m. Leaves 6-16 x 2-4.5 cm, elliptic-oblong to oblong, apex acute to acuminate, lower surface glabrous though with a few red punctate hairs overlying the veins. Flowers 6-7-lobed, 10-15, in a dense truss, rose-magenta to crimson or magenta-blue to pale peach, sometimes with purple flecks and/or a basal blotch, tubular-campanulate, with nectar pouches, 30-45 mm; ovary usually glabrous, style glabrous. Flowering March-April. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)

Distribution  Myanmar NE China SE Tibet, Yunnan

Habitat 2,700-4,000 m

RHS Hardiness Rating H3

Conservation status Least concern (LC)

Taxonomic note This species differs from all others in the subsection in its 6-7-lobed corollas. The flower colour is particularly variable. R. eritimum is said to differ in its rounded, not acute leaf apex. There is however, gradation from one form to the other, making this an unreliable diagnostic character. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)

An evergreen shrub or a small tree up to 30 ft high. Leaves oblong, oblong- lanceolate, or oblong-oblanceolate, 4 to 6 in. long, 78 to 178 in. wide, acute to obtuse at the apex, glabrous. Flowers in terminal trusses of ten to fifteen, borne early in spring, sometimes in February; pedicels 38 to 58 in. long, floccose and sometimes glandular also. Calyx minute, usually glabrous, but sometimes with the same covering as the pedicels. Corolla five- to seven-lobed, tubular-campanulate, 112 to 3 in. long, commonly crimson, rose-magenta or blue-magenta, with darker nectar-pouches at the base and sometimes spotted inside, occasionally white or, in the type of R. persicinum, peach-coloured. Stamens ten to fourteen, downy near the base or glabrous. Ovary glabrous or slightly hairy; style glabrous. Bot. Mag., t. 9083. (s. and ss. Irroratum)

Native of N.W. Yunnan and bordering parts of upper Burma; discovered by Forrest below the Sungkwei pass in 1906 and introduced by him. Although hardy in a sheltered position south of London, its flowers are of little beauty and both they and the young growths are often destroyed by frost.