Rhododendron x gandavensis ‘Punicea’
This is likely to be one of the early Ghent hybrids, known collectively as Rhododendron x gandavensis Hort. See Rhododendron x gandavensis ‘Gloria-mundi’ for further details. I have found no specific description of puniceas. Azalea hybridae-belgicae punicea is listed in both the 1830 and 1836 Loddiges’ Nursery catalogues, copies of which are held at Camden Park [CPA].
Horticultural & Botanical History
See Rhododendron x gandavensis Hort. and its varieties.
History at Camden Park
Recorded as received per Sovereign in 1831. [MP A2948]. In the Loddiges’ Nursery catalogues Azalea hybridae-belgicae punicea is listed under hardy trees and shrubs but not marked with a ‘c’, indicating grown at Camden, in the 1836 edition. Nevertheless it is likely to have been obtained from Loddiges’ Nursery but was probably short lived in the gardens, as were so many Azaleas, since it did not appear in the 1843 catalogue. Macarthur had mixed fortunes with plants received from Loddiges’ and elsewhere at this time and many were dead on arrival. Some of these are listed in a subsequent letter but it is possible that others arrived alive and were planted in the gardens although never listed in the catalogues.
This plant could be Azalea punicea Sweet [Annales de l'Institut Royal Horticole de Fromont, i. 104/1829.] This name is given as a synonym for Rhododendron phoeniceum G.Don, which see.
Published Jun 18, 2009 - 10:20 AM | Last updated Sep 09, 2011 - 02:34 PM