Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Look! A Rhododendron blooming, in December…

As frequent readers probably know I’m no Rhododendron expert, but I thought it was remarkable to see a Rhody blooming in December. I apologize that I didn’t get a better photo. Chalk it up to an inexpensive camera and my personal rule to stay on the sidewalk, unless invited closer by the homeowner. So, why the December blooms? We’ve had a cool, but not cold fall. Spring was almost non-existent, summer was late and only a few weeks long. Maybe it’s confused by our wacky weather year? Or maybe not…I found this list of Twelve Months of Flowering Rhododendrons and sure enough there’s a pink flowering plant (Nobleanum Venustum) listed as a possible bloomer for mild November and December’s “in the Puget Sound area”…which obviously NE Portland is not. But since the nursery who published the PDF is located on an island in Puget Sound I’ll forgive them their specificity and just be happy that my climate mirrors theirs, at least sometimes.

The same garden (a neighbors) had a couple of other stray December bloomers…


  1. I always have mixed feelings about these late bloomers. Glad to see them, but sad that they'll be dead in as little as a few hours. :(

  2. I hope the out-of-season blooms don't mean they are losing so much heat from the house that it encourages the plants against it to bloom. I have had very early leafing of a vine maple that was beside a clothes dryer vent.

  3. I thought it was part species Rhodie when I saw your picture. There are so many that bloom at different times. It's sad we don't see these offered more frequently.

    Reminds me that I've been seeing some amazing Camellia sasanqua shrubs around town! With no rain, the blooms look better than ever!

  4. Microclimates! They will keep us on our toes.

  5. I love that you have a rule to stay on the sidewalk! So funny!

  6. Almost the same scenario here Loree, due to the milder than usual autumn we've had lots of plants got 'confused'! Those blooms are a nice bonus though!

  7. Alan, we've had a couple of 27 degree lows now and their still going strong!

    MulchMaid, you know I hadn't thought about heat from the house as the cause, perhaps you're right.

    Ann, see...as I said I don't know much about Rhodie's! Agree, the lack of rain is really allowing a lot of plants blooms (and leaves) to keep looking good longer than "normal."

    ricki, here's hoping of but my Schefflera in a good micro-climate.

    Three on Grove, oh yes...I try to be a polite blogger!

    Mark and Gaz, is the new normal that there is no normal?


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