Rhododendron coryanum Tagg & Forrest

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

Recommended citation
'Rhododendron coryanum' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/rhododendron/rhododendron-coryanum/). Accessed 2020-08-08.

Genus

Other species in genus

Glossary

Tibet
Traditional English name for the formerly independent state known to its people as Bod now the Tibet (Xizang) Autonomous Region of the People’s Republic of China. The name Xizang is used in lists of Chinese provinces.
glabrous
Lacking hairs smooth. glabrescent Becoming hairless.
indumentum
A covering of hairs or scales.
inflorescence
Flower-bearing part of a plant; arrangement of flowers on the floral axis.
ovary
Lowest part of the carpel containing the ovules; later developing into the fruit.

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Credits

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

Recommended citation
'Rhododendron coryanum' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/rhododendron/rhododendron-coryanum/). Accessed 2020-08-08.

Shrub or small tree, 2.5-6 m. Leaves 8.5-16 x 2.2-4 cm, elliptic to oblanceolate, apex acute, lower surface with a thin compacted silvery to fawn indumentum intermixed with a few glands and embedded in a surface film. Flowers 20-30, in a dense inflorescence, whitish, with crimson flecks, funnel-campanulate, nectar pouches lacking, 25-30 mm; ovary glabrous or with a few white simple hairs, style glabrous. Flowering April-May. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)

Distribution  China SE Tibet, NW Yunnan

Habitat 3,650-4,400 m

RHS Hardiness Rating H5

Awards AM 1979 (R.N.S. Clarke, Borde Hill) to a clone 'Chelsea Chimes', from Kingdon-Ward 6311. Flowers up to 8-9 per truss; corolla widely funnel-campanulate, white, with sparse red-purple spotting in upper throat.

Conservation status Vulnerable (VU)

Taxonomic note The glabrous ovary and many-flowered inflorecence are the distinguishing features of this species. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)

This species is placed in the subsection Argyrophylla, but is unique in that group in having a glabrous ovary and an inflorescence with twenty to thirty flowers. In many respects it recalls R. uvariifolium in subsection Fulva and the similarity even extends to the leaf indumentum, though the hairs composing it are of a different type. The possibility of confusion between the two species is shown by the fact that Kingdon Ward’s 6311 from the Tsangpo Bend area, listed as ‘R. coryanum var.’ in the R.H.S. Handbook, has been re-identified as R. uvariifolium (Rev. 2, p. 445). Some plants grown as R. coryanum are from this source, and the true species is rare in cultivation.

R. coryanum was described from specimens collected by Forrest on the Salween-Kiuchiang divide near the border between north-west Yunnan and south-east Tibet, and was introduced by him under F.20322 and F.20832.

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