Skip to main content

Rhododendron aureum var. aureum


This low-growing evergreen rhododendron is from areas of eastern Asia where climatic and light conditions are similar to those in Finland. It often grows in the scrub above the tree line on windswept mountainsides, in company with only the dwarf Siberian pine Pinus pumila, which is also hardy throughout Finland.

This variety of the yellow-flowered rhododendron is rarely grown as it doesn’t enjoy the mild climates of central and western Europe, where rhododendrons are so popular. Even in Finland it is rare, although given good sites and suitable provenances it should grow successfully almost throughout the whole country. Provenances from northern Japan are probably the most common in Europe, but at Mustila the most successful specimens are from Kamchatka.

The pale yellow flowers, which in its native habitat appear in July, tend to open at Mustila in spring as soon as the weather gets a little warmer. Adapted as it is to a short summer, its attempts to flower in Finland’s semi-maritime climate often fail, but it is highly attractive when successful, and a welcome harbinger of spring.