Rhododendron lapponicum (L.) Wahlenb.

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Credits

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

Recommended citation
'Rhododendron lapponicum' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/rhododendron/rhododendron-lapponicum/). Accessed 2020-08-14.

Genus

Synonyms

  • Azalea lapponica L.
  • Rhododendron parvifolium Adams

Other species in genus

Glossary

calyx
(pl. calyces) Outer whorl of the perianth. Composed of several sepals.
apex
(pl. apices) Tip. apical At the apex.
calyx
(pl. calyces) Outer whorl of the perianth. Composed of several sepals.
corolla
The inner whorl of the perianth. Composed of free or united petals often showy.
included
(botanical) Contained within another part or organ.
prostrate
Lying flat.

References

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Credits

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

Recommended citation
'Rhododendron lapponicum' from the website Trees and Shrubs Online (treesandshrubsonline.org/articles/rhododendron/rhododendron-lapponicum/). Accessed 2020-08-14.

Prostrate to erect shrub, to 1 m. Leaves 0.4-2(-2.5) x 0.2-0.7(-0.9) cm, oblong-elliptic to elliptic-ovate, apex obtuse or rounded, mucronate, lower surface covered with a mixture of touching, straw-coloured to fawn and ferrugineous scales. Flowers 3-6; calyx lobes 1-2 mm, deltoid; corolla violet-rose to purple or sometimes white, broadly funnel-shaped, 7-15 mm; stamens 5-10, about as long as the corolla; ovary scaly, style longer than the stamens, glabrous. Flowering March-April. 

A distinctive and widespread species that is difficult in cultivation. Royal Horticultural Society (1997)

Distribution  CanadaDenmark Greenland FinlandNorwayRussia Arctic SwedenUnited States Alaska

RHS Hardiness Rating H6

Awards PC 1993 (A.J. Richards, Newcastle upon Tyne) to a clone 'Brian Davidson', from seed collected in Norway by Brian Davidson.

Conservation status Least concern (LC)

A dwarf evergreen shrub rarely more than 1 to 112 ft high, the lower branches often prostrate; young wood very scaly, becoming warted. Leaves oblong, rounded or abruptly tapered at the apex, 14 to 1 in. long, 18 to 14 in. wide, rough and dark green above, covered beneath with brownish-yellow scales; stalk 112 to 18 in. long. Flowers bright purple, 34 in. across, produced three to six together in a small cluster. Calyx and flower-stalk very scaly; calyx-lobes triangular, fringed; stamens five to eight, about as long as the corolla, quite devoid of down; flower-stalk 14 to 12 in. long. Bot. Mag., t. 3106. (s. Lapponicum)

Native of northern Scandinavia, often on limestone, and of North America in high latitudes, also found on a few mountain tops in the north-eastern USA. It was introduced to Britain in 1825 but was soon lost to cultivation and although reintroduced many times since then it has never become established. It probably requires exceptionally cool, moist conditions and a long snow-cover. It is a very pretty plant, the colour of the flowers being very bright, and with more blue in them than almost any other species. See also R. parvifolium.

From the Supplement (Vol. V)

The Philipsons, in their revision of the subsection Lapponica, adhere to the view of some other botanists that R. parvifolium must be included in R. lapponicum without distinction. The combined species has the widest range of any rhododendron, occurring in both the eastern and western hemispheres at high latitudes, with southward extensions into Korea, Japan and the mountains of North America.

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