"One of the most delightful things about a garden is the anticipation it brings."

Sunday, May 31, 2009

The big purple rhodie.

A few people asked about the big rhododendron in my post yesterday.  I sort of purposely didn't tell my husband to put the flash on when he took my picture under it.  I'm one of those people that hates having my picture taken.  But this rhodie is looking so beautiful right now I thought I should give it the pictures it deserves.  
When we bought this house 10 years ago this poor shrub barely had any blooms on it.  I've worked very hard to bring it back to life.  I've put compost around it and pruned all the dead branches out.  A few years ago we took down the scraggly Aborvitae hedge that grew along the fence to the right of it.  We also had the large cedar behind it limbed up so that we could get some more sun in our garden.  All these things have helped it to put on its best show ever this year.  It has been absolutely full of bumblebees.  When I'm working in the garden near it I can hear a loud buzzing from them.

As you enter the side yard the purple flowers are hard to miss.

Closer still.

A perfect backdrop for the water garden.  Lots of herbs and flowers are planted in the corner bed here.

I love the red inside, no wonder the bees love it so much.

Now I think these are much more flattering pictures!
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  1. We have fantastic rhododendrons here too! I think the hard Winter that we both had might have given them a real boost! Yours looks great!

  2. I wish I could smell it! Its totally gorgeous.

  3. Wow. What a spectacular plant. Catherine, you must have magic fingers. It is so full of blossoms. What an impressive sight (soon you'll have to sell tickets to the neighbors so they can come and view it). Wow.

  4. Shame on me, here I am living in the PNW where Rhodies do so well, and I don't have a single one in my garden, YET!

  5. Wow, Wow, Wow....just beautiful.....wish we could grow them here in SO CAL

  6. That rhodie is stupendous! I saw you standing under it holding Bilbo and wondered what it was.


  7. That's so pretty. It makes you so proud when you work hard to save a plant and it turns out this spectacular, doesn't it? Good for you and thanks for sharing.

  8. Matron - I'm beginning to think this cold winter was worth it, aside from barely any hydrangeas with buds. A lot of my trees and shrubs have never bloomed better.

    Prairie Chicken - I wish it smelled as good as it looks, it doesn't have much of a scent.

    Prospero - I'm not sure if they're magic, I think a lot of it was that it gets more sun now.

    keewee - I bet you can find space for at least one :)

    Susie - We are lucky that they grow so well here, they are in bloom all over the place now.

    Flower Lady - This one is more like a tree. I have another big one that looks like a giant shrub, but I love how this one grows with all of its twisted branches.

    MIldred - It definitely has been worth the effort. I love watching the bees on it, it was just covered today.

  9. How magnificent is that Rhoadie Catherine?! Wow, I'm speechless. I would say all your hard work has paid off in spades. Cute photo of you under it in the previous post too. :-)

  10. that is a great looking shrub!!

  11. Your rhododendron is beautiful! I've never seen or even heard of this shrub before. It's probably not something that grows in the high desert of California. At least, I can enjoy yours. Thanks for sharing!!


  12. Gorgeous! I had a rhodie for a while. Before I killed it. :-(

  13. Kathleen - Thanks! I like how this one grows like a big tree.

    Darla - Thanks, pretty huge!

    Teri - The seem to really like the Pacific Northwest type of climate. I think the desert would be too hot :)

    Kim and Victoria - Your garden looks so pretty you don't need one :)

  14. It is GORGEOUS. I don't think I have ever seen one that color

  15. It is AWESOME.
    Were the purple globes in front of the bush chives or globe thistles?

  16. Dirt Princess - It really is a pretty color, one of the nice things a previous owner left for us.

    The Retired One - They are chives, I think they are so cute in bloom. We've had those chives for years.

  17. Now I know what the purple tree was. It is so pretty and I love how you have shaped it up.


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