Rhododendron 'Weston's Diamond Pink' was in full bloom underneath the pines on the second Japanese Island. A stunning sight, this is the best bloom staff can recall in years (2012). At the tip of each branch a truss of flower buds open to display double pink flowers with a silvery center a week or so before the PJM cultivar. In the fall most leaves color up orange to red and drop but those closest to the tips of the branches remain on the branch until flowering. Rhododendrons, regardless of species or cultivar, need special attention in the Chicago area because the soil pH values are too high. When this happens certain nutrients, like iron, become unavailable for the production of metabolites necessary for healthy growth. This typically shows up as inter-veinal (between the veins) chlorosis (yellowing) resulting in stunted growth. Planting beds should be amended with peat moss and annual applications of powdered sulfur are sometimes also needed. Fertilization should be limited to liquid fertilizers that produce an acid reaction and are usually labeled for use on Rhododendrons and Camellias. The roots should never completely dry out.
Partial Shade, Full Shade
Screen/Hedge, Specimen Plant