Prized for its sweet fragrance and bold splashes of color in spring, Rhododendron luteum, commonly known as Pontic Azalea, is a striking, bushy, medium-sized deciduous Azalea. Its large floral trusses produce a magnificent display with their 7 to 17, funnel-shaped, bright golden-yellow flowers, up to 2 in. wide (5 cm), with a darker yellow blotch. In late spring to early summer, the air around the flowers is delightfully scented, making this Azalea a valuable addition near a patio and around the home. Equally attractive, the deciduous foliage of oblong to oblanceolate, mid green leaves warms up to eye-catching shades of brilliant orange, yellow and red in fall. This upright, spreading and deciduous shrub is native to Eastern Europe (Poland and the Balkans), southern Russia and the Caucasus and the parent of many cultivars and hybrids, including many of the famous Ghent Azaleas.
- Grows vigorously up to 4-5 ft. tall and wide (120-150 cm)
- Winner of the Rhododendron of the Year Award of the American Rhododendron Society for the North West region.
- A sun to part shade lover, this plant is easily grown in moist, acidic, humusy, well-drained soils. Tolerates full sun in cool moist sites. 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.
- Attracts butterflies, hummingbirds and birds.
- Removing spent flowers promotes new growth.
- All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested