Rhododendron calendulaceum (Michx.) Torr. var. speciosa
Treated here as a naturally occurring variety of Rhododendron calendulaceum (Michx.) Torr. Tall growing deciduous azalea with funnel-shaped red flowers with yellow spots. To 2m. [RHSD, Hortus].
Horticultural & Botanical History
Paxton's Dictionary describes Azalea speciosa as an American species and lists several varieties. ‘[Azalea speciosa is] a rich rose with crimson blotch and spots; very showy, flowers large. The plant was seven feet by five.’ [FC p.136/1848]. ‘[Azalea speciosa aurantica] is a native of Carolina, has been long cultivated in England, and is hardy enough to bear our winters uninjured.’ [LBC no.1255/1828].
History at Camden Park
Only listed in the 1845 catalogue.
The identity of Macarthur’s Azalea speciosa is in some doubt because Azalea speciosa and Rhododendron speciosum are confused names having been variously applied to Rhododendron ponticum L., a European species, and Rhododendron indicum Sweet, a Japanese species, as well as Rhododendron calendulaceum (Michx.) Torr. However Rhododendron calendulaceum (Michx.) Torr. var. speciosa is the most likely identification.
Published Jun 08, 2009 - 01:05 PM | Last updated Sep 11, 2011 - 04:44 PM