Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Rhododendron indicum ‘Exquisita’

A cultivar of Rhododendron indicum Sweet, Azalea exquisita is ‘a pale pink with white margin and rich rose-coloured blotch and spots.  It is a first-rate variety, and deserves to be in every collection.  Plant five feet by four.’  [FC p.136/1848].

Horticultural & Botanical History

It was figured among seedling Chinese Azaleas in Paxton's Magazine of Botany and described as similar to A. indica variegata, but with brighter pink colouring and larger clusters of flowers.  The flowers are single.  [MB p.55/1845].  It was also figured in Flore des Serres, the raiser  named as Smith of Norbiton, who sold the rights to Knight and Perry.  [FS pl.VII 6e Liv./1847].  A list of recommended hardy azaleas in The Gardeners Chronicle included ‘Exquisita’ [Gard. Chron 1850] and it was also described as a good garden variety by Paxton's Dictionary.

For more information on Indica Azaleas see Rhododendron indicum Sweet.

History at Camden Park

Listed in the 1850 and 1857 catalogues [T.109/1850].  Desideratum to Loddiges’ Nursery, 13th February, 1848 [MP A2933-1, p.172].  It seems likely that exquisita was received as it is not amongst those notated ‘died’.  ‘Exquisita alba’ was requested again on 1st February, 1849.  [MP A2933-1, p.185].


Published Jun 05, 2009 - 05:20 PM | Last updated Sep 12, 2011 - 04:32 PM

Figured are three single azaleas, with red, pink, and pale pink flowers.  Paxton's Magazine of Botany  p.55, 1845.

Rhododendron indicum ‘Exquisita’, ‘Optima’ and ‘Broughtonii’ | MB p.55/1845 | RBGS


Family Ericaceae
Region of origin

China or Japan, this variety of garden origin, England

  • Azalea exquisita Hort.


Common Name

Indica Azalea

Name in the Camden Park Record

Azalea Indica exquisita 


Confidence level high