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Where to plant rhododendrons

Just one more part of the planning is location of your plants. Consider the environment that your plant will have for growing. Most rhododendrons prefer early sun and afternoon shade or filtered sun. However, there are plants that can endure quite a bit more sun than others.

From my experience, I will tell you that any plant that grows in the deep shade all day tends to get quite leggy. Ramapo is one example. I have a shade house for starting very young plants. My Ramapos that were located in the shade tended to grow tall and leggy. I have actually seen a Ramapo Rhododendron tree at one of the plant shows! The Ramapo plants placed out in the beds that got full sun (which is what they prefer, being a small leafed miniature) grew in to full mounds with a much more pleasing growth habit for that variety. Planting location will need to be taken into account when making your selections.

A general rule for rhodies is, the smaller the leaf, the more sun it will endure. However, as we all know, there is always an exception. One major example is the beautiful large leafed Scintillation. This is a fast growing, very large leafed pink with huge trusses, that seems to thrive in bright sunlight.
Another such plant is the purple Anah Kruschke.

Many of the yellows and orange bicolors seem to need more shade. However, miniature yellow Wren seems to thrive in afternoon sun. Older, established plants can usually take more severe weather conditions, which is why you sometimes get a better deal in the long run by purchasing a little older, more expensive plant. It is advisable to plan your color preferences and locate where you want to plant them. Consider how large you want them to be in not just ten, but twenty or thirty years. Then go and search of the proper plant for your location. That?s the fun of it all!
Rhododendron News