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 Sweet var. magnifica

Azalea magnifica, a hybrid bred by Messrs. Rollinson about 1857, is figured in the Illustration Horticole with large single white flowers, the upper petals shown with a brilliant orange centre, all shaded with crimson.  [IH pl.209/1859].  The variety alba magnifica is figured in the Floricultural Cabinet: ‘This is an admirable pure white variety, of exquisite form, and the petals of thick substance.’  [FC p.69/1852].  Galle considers Rollinson’s ‘Magnifica’ to be a ‘Mucronatum’ cultivar.  [See Rhododendron indicum Sweet var. alba].  

Horticultural & Botanical History

For more information on Indica Azaleas see Rhododendron indicum Sweet.

History at Camden Park

Listed only in the 1857 catalogue [T.99/1857].


The Indica variety ‘Magnifica’ sold today has purplish-pink flowers and is probably not synonymous with Rollinson’s plant.  The deciduous Occidentale hybrid ‘Magnificum’, with creamy-white flowers, flushed pink, with an orange flare, rose flushed in bud, was a later introduction.  [Hilliers’].

Published Jun 04, 2009 - 03:44 PM | Last updated Jul 18, 2010 - 12:55 PM

Shown are white flowers, upper petals with a brilliant orange centre, streaked crimson.  Illustration Horticole pl.209, 1859.

Rhododendron indicum Sweet magnifica | IH pl.209/1859 | RBGS

Family Ericaceae
Region of origin

China or Japan.  This variety of garden origin, England

Common Name

Indica Azalea

Name in the Camden Park Record

Azalea Indica magnifica 

Confidence level high