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Boursault Rhododendron

Category:

An attractive broadleaf evergreen shrub with lavender flowers in spring and a compact upright habit, quite hardy, good in partial shade; absolutely must have well-drained, highly acidic and organic soil, use plenty of peat moss when planting

Characteristics

Species:
catawbiense
Other Species Names:
Catawba Rhododendron
Average Landscape Height:
5 feet
Average Landscape Width:
5 feet
Genus:
Rhododendron
Cultivar:
Boursault
Branching:
multi-stemmed
Evergreen:
1
Plant Form:
upright spreading
Canopy:
leggy
Growth Rate:
slow
Pruning:
prune after flowering
Flower Color:
lavender
Flower Bud Color:
violet
Flower Form:
trumpet
Flower Period:
in mid spring
Summer Foliage Color:
green
Maximum Light:
full sun
Minimum Light:
partial shade
Maximum Moisture:
moist
Minimum Moisture:
moist
Pollution Tolerance:
medium

Ornamental Features

Boursault Rhododendron is covered in stunning clusters of lavender trumpet-shaped flowers at the ends of the branches in mid spring, which emerge from distinctive violet flower buds. It has green evergreen foliage. The large narrow leaves remain green throughout the winter.

Landscape Attributes

Boursault Rhododendron is a multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its relatively coarse texture can be used to stand it apart from other landscape plants with finer foliage.

Planting & Growing

Boursault Rhododendron will grow to be about 5 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 5 feet. It tends to be a little leggy, with a typical clearance of 1 foot from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 40 years or more.

This shrub does best in full sun to partial shade. You may want to keep it away from hot, dry locations that receive direct afternoon sun or which get reflected sunlight, such as against the south side of a white wall. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It is very fussy about its soil conditions and must have rich, acidic soils to ensure success, and is subject to chlorosis (yellowing) of the foliage in alkaline soils. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution, and will benefit from being planted in a relatively sheltered location. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This is a selection of a native North American species.

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