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Rhododendrons arboreum

It was in 1796 that the first of the Himalayan rhododendrons was discovered by a Captain Hardwicke. This was the tall Rhododendron arboreum. It was not until 1815 that it was successfully grown in this country and it first flowered at The Grange, Northington, near Alresford in Hampshire in 1825.

Most of the hybrids, which are so widely grown in our gardens, have inherited their colour from this species. Hundreds of pinks and reds can trace their ancestry back to this tree-like rhododendron, which is a tender plant in most parts of the country. Fortunately, it does not pass on its delicate constitution to its offspring, although it does give them its colour.

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