For those of you wondering about my constant admonition not to plant rhododendrons as foreground plantings in the Northeast, here’s why:
This is one of my favorite rhododendrons ‘Sensation’ this morning in 15º weather… (The picture is a bit blurry not because it’s out of focus, but because of heavy snow swirling round when I shot it.) Believe it or not, the plant is not dead. The leaves will completely re-inflate once the weather warms.
If the weather warms. This winter I am beginning to wonder. We have 4′ of snow on the ground, on the FLAT, with another foot expected tomorrow. Sigh.
But, to return to the subject at hand – rhododendrons in the Northeast are best use as background plantings, either tucked in the distance or fronted by other more resilient plantings, where their blossoms can be appreciated in the spring, and the foliage can be ignored in the winter.
For those of you readers luxuriating in the temperate Pacific Northwest admiring the verdant green rhodie foliage out your windows and chuckling, I don’t even want to hear about it.