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Rhodora (Rhododendron canadense)

"Rhodies" are among my favorite plants; just as are daffodils and all the early spring flowers. To northerners they herald the end of winter and the beginning of the warm season.
Daffodils are not native to Nova Scotia just as the various species of rhododendron which people grow as ornamental plants. We do, however, have our native rhododendron, rhododendron canadense. Rhododendron is a Greek word meaning rose tree. Blooming in the month of May and into June, it is one of the our dominant spring-flowering shrubs and large areas of rose-purple colour will be seen on the edges of bogs and in the rocky barrens. The effect, this mass of colour, is mainly due to the fact that the plants first puts out its blossoms, then its leaves. The stems of this shrub are woody and wiry; its leaves, thin and deciduous. There apparently is a species (albiflorma) which has white blossoms; it is however reported as rare.

An image of Rhodora

An image of Rhodora

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Peter Landry

2011