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Rhododendron of the Year Plant Awards: 2023


South West USA Region

R. 'Naselle

Elepidote Rhododendron: 'Naselle'

Flower strong purplish red shading to strong brilliant yellow at base of three upper lobes, and strong reddish orange spotting, openly funnel-shaped, wavy edges, 4" across.  Up to 15 flowers per truss.  Blooms early midseason.  Leaves elliptic, flat, apiculate apex, cuneate base, 4" long, pale green, very pale maroon when new.  Round plant habit.  Typical height: 4 feet in 10 years.  Plant and bud hardy to -5F (-21C).  Hybridizer is Elliott.

 
R. augustinii ssp. augustinii

Lepidote Rhododendron: R. augustinii ssp. augustinii

Flower blue to purple, pink, lavender or white, usually with a yellow-green or brownish blotch on upper lobes, openly funnel-shaped. 1" - 2" across.  2-6 flowers per truss.  Blooms early midseason to midseason.  Leaves narrowly elliptic to lanceolate, up to 4" long, with hairs along veins, dark green above, underside densely scaly.  Tall, upright plant habit.  Typical height is 6 feet after 10 years.  Cold hardy to 0F (-18C).  Native to Hubei and Szechwan China.  Named after Augustine Henry, who discovered the species in 1886.

 
R. 'Girard's Fuchsia'

Evergreen Azalea: 'Girard's Fuchsia'

Flower moderate to deep purplish-red with moderate purplish-red spots, reverse deep purplish-pink, broadly funnel-shaped, wavy lobes, 2" to 3" across.  Inflorescence 3 flowered.  Blooms midseason.  Leaves narrowly obovate to elliptic, apiculate apex, narrowly cuneate base, 1" long, glossy, moderate yellowish olive green.  Broad plant habit.  Grows to a typical height of 4 ft. in 10 yrs.  Cold hardy to -15F (-26C).  Hybridized by Girard.

 
R. 'Mary Poppins'

Deciduous Azalea: 'Mary Poppins'

Flower bright orange-red with an orange dorsal blotch, funnel-shaped, wavy edges, single, about 1" across.  Round shaped truss holds 12-16 flowers.  Blooms late midseason to late.  Leaves elliptic to ovate, acute apex, cuneate base, flat, 4" long, bronze-colored when new, dark green when mature, deciduous.  Upright, slightly rounded growth habit.  Height: 4 ft. in 10 years.  Cold hardy to -20F (-29C).  Hybridizer is unknown.

Photos (top to bottom) by Ken Cox, Ken Cox, Joe Coleman, Harold Greer.

Prior Years Selections for South West USA Region

2022

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004


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