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 maximum L.

A tall shrub or small tree with leaves to 10cm long, and compact trusses of slightly fragrant, funnel-shaped, light rose-purple or white flowers, spotted yellow-green inside , in early summer.  To 3m.  [RHSD, Hortus, Hilliers’, Millais].

Horticultural & Botanical History

‘This elegant tree, according to Catesby, adorns the western and remote parts of Pennsylvania, always growing in the most fertile soil, or on the rocky declivities of hills and river banks, in shady and moist places. […] Introduced in 1736, by Peter Collinson, Esq.’  [BM t.951/1806]. 

History at Camden Park

Listed only in the 1845 catalogue.  It is listed in the 1836 edition of Loddiges’ Nursery catalogue, a copy of which is held and Camden Park [CPA], and marked with a ‘c’ in this copy, indicating grown at Camden.


Rhododendron maximum Hook. (1837) = Rhododendron macrophyllum D.Don ex G.Don

Published Jun 18, 2009 - 05:25 PM | Last updated Jul 18, 2010 - 11:33 AM

Figured are oblong leaves and cluster of bell-shaped pale rosy-pink flowers.  Curtis's Botanical Magazine t.951, 1806.

Rhododendron maximum L. | BM t.951/1806 | BHL

Family Ericaceae
Region of origin

North America

Common Name

Great laurel, Rosebay

Name in the Camden Park Record

Rhododendron maximum 

Confidence level high