Fragrant and exceptionally cold hardy, Rhododendron 'Golden Lights' is a compact, deciduous Azalea that belongs to the Northern Lights Hybrid Series developed by the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Any Azalea included in this series has flower bud hardiness of -30°F (-34°C) to -45°F (-42°C) to withstand Minnesota winters. Opening from red-orange buds in late spring to early summer, before the leaves unfurl, 'Golden Lights' bears abundant flat trusses of 10 luminous, funnel-shaped, golden or butter-yellow flowers with lovely salmon-pink to orange highlights. Each bloom in the truss is less than 2 in. (5cm), but they are so profuse that the trusses look enormous. The foliage of narrow, olive green leaves has the added advantage of greater resistance to mildew than some other hybrid azalea cultivars. A very reliable performer, this flamboyant Azalea enjoys a nice mounded habit and looks terrific in shrub borders.
- Grows with a compact, rounded habit, up to 3-6 ft. tall and wide (90-160 cm).
- Winner of the Rhododendron of the Year Award of the American Rhododendron Society for the Great Lakes and South Central regions.
- A sun to part shade lover, this plant is easily grown in moist, acidic, humusy, well-drained soils. Will do well in considerable sun, but has a preference for bright shade, filtered sunlight, or morning sun, and can even do fairly well in somewhat deeper shade. Full afternoon sun could result in bleached leaves and shortened blooming period. Plant shallowly in a location protected from strong winter winds. Protect from frost to prevent damage to flowers. Mulch annually with leaf mould to retain moisture, control weeds, and cool the soil.
- Perfect for shrub borders or mixed borders, as a flowering hedge or privacy screen, foundation plantings and shade gardens. Great for small gardens too!
- Attracts butterflies, hummingbirds and birds.
- Removing spent flowers promotes new growth.
- All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested.