Azalea falconeri (Hook.f.) Kuntze
It is a tree, and sometimes the dominant canopy tree, that typically grows to 12–15 meters in height, with leathery leaves that are elliptic to obovate in shape and usually about 1 foot in length. Flowers are white to cream, pale yellow, or pinkish, with a prominent purple blotch.
Distribution and habitat
The falconer rhododendron occurs from eastern Nepal through Sikkim and Bhutan, as well as adjacent areas of northeastern India (Arunachal Pradesh and West Bengal). It grows at altitudes of 2700–3750 meters.
In cultivation in the UK, Rhododendron falconeri has gained the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit. It is hardy down to −10 °C (14 °F) but requires a sheltered position. Like most rhododendrons it needs an acid soil that is rich in leaf mould.
- Rhododendr. Sikkim-Himalaya 1: t. 10 1849.
- The Plant List
- Species Portrait: Rhododendron falconeri Hooker F., 1849, Steve Hootman, Journal American Rhododendron Society, Volume 57, Number 2, Spring 2003.
- Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden