Yaku Princess Rhododendron
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The picture of innocence and grace! Yaku Princess Rhododendron greets the balmy days of mid- to late spring with a plethora of precious flowers that will make you swoon. Rose-pink in bud, they unfurl to reveal fresh white interiors with just the faintest blush of pink. Can you imagine a lovelier scene to see outside your window? When the blooms are spent, Yaku Princess continues to be an asset in the landscape, with clean, dense, evergreen foliage that reaches all the way to the ground. Plant this stellar Accent in your shady entryway garden, foundation beds, or patio area for a polished look throughout the year.
- Hardiness Zone: 6
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Hybrid Evergreen Rhododendrons are the glorious result of years of patient breeding work done using countless species and forms of these spectacular Accents. Yaku Princess Rhododendron originated at the nursery of Tony Shammarello near Cleveland, Ohio. Shammarello took a sudden interest in breeding Rhododendrons after the record-breakingly cold winter of 1938, which left 90% of the Rhodies in his fields crispy and brown. He set out to develop new plants that were more hardy and also less leggy than those on the market at the time. He bred Yaku Princess in 1960 and released it in 1976. Decades later, it continues to be a favorite among Rhododendron fans.
Yaku Princess is a type of Yakushima Rhododendron, a group appreciated for—among other things—its fantastic foliage. Leaves emerge with a beautiful silvery cast. They later turn green on top but have a fine layer of tan fuzz on the undersides. This fuzz serves as an effective deterrent to the insects that may attack Rhododendrons and Azaleas.
How to Grow
Rhododendrons appreciate a little pampering. They thrive when shielded from hot summer sun and given moist but well-drained, acidic soil. They never like to dry out but don’t care for soggy conditions, either. Rhododendrons can “burn” from harsh chemical fertilizers, so feed with a gentle organic product like Bower & Branch Elements™ Fertilizer. Azalea lace bug can sometimes be an issue, but specimens grown in optimal conditions in most cases will remain healthy and resistant to attack. Yakushima Rhododendrons, like this one, are particularly resistantto the Azalea lace bug. If pruning is necessary, trim your Yaku Princess Rhododendronimmediately after blooming, as next year’s flower buds are formed in summer.
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