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rhododendron

rhododendron (rō´dədĕn´drən) [Gr.,=rose tree], any plant of the genus Rhododendron, shrubs of the family Ericaceae (heath family) found chiefly in mountainous areas of the arctic and north temperate regions and also of the mountainous tropics. Encompassing more than 1,000 species, they are particularly abundant in Asia, whence many of the popular cultivated species and hybrids derive. They commonly have large, shining, leathery, evergreen, semievergreen, or deciduous leaves and clusters of large pink, white, or purplish flowers. Native American species include the great laurel, or rose bay (R. maximum), the common eastern species and the state flower of West Virginia; the mountain rose bay (R. catawbiense) of the southern mountains; and the western rhododendron (R. californicum), the state flower of Washington. The azalea and the rhodora are names used for similar shrubs of the same genus with more typically deciduous leaves. Rhododendrons are classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, order Ericales, family Ericaceae.

See F. P. Lee, The Azalea Book (1965); C. L. Phillips, The Rothschild Rhododendrons (1967); J. Brown, Tales of the Rose Tree (2006).

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Rhododendron

Rhododendron (family Ericaceae) A genus of shrubs or trees that have big, scaly buds, simple, alternate, mostly evergreen leaves, and flowers borne in short racemes or umbel-like clusters, with 5-lobed, funnel-shaped to bell-shaped, slightly irregular corollas, and 5 or 10 stamens. Many species and hybrids are cultivated for their splendid flowers and sometimes for their foliage. If it is incorporated in quantity by bees, Rhododendron nectar may render honey poisonous. There are about 850 species, in 3 major groups. The Rhododendron group includes both showy temperate species and the Vireya group of delicate, tropical species, some of which have scented flowers. The vast majority of species are confined to the mountains of South-east Asia and the Himalayas, but a few extend westwards into Europe and N. America, and 1 to northern Australia. Azalea (with 5 stamens) is sometimes regarded as a separate genus.

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rhododendron

rho·do·den·dron / ˌrōdəˈdendrən/ • n. a shrub or small tree (genus Rhododendron) of the heath family, with large clusters of bell-shaped flowers and typically with large evergreen leaves, widely grown as an ornamental.

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rhododendron

rhododendron Large genus of shrubs and small trees that grow in the acid soils of cool temperate regions in North America, Europe, and Asia. Primarily evergreen, they have leathery leaves and bell-shaped white, pink or purple flowers. Family Ericaceae. See also azalea

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rhododendron

rhododendron XVII. — L. rhododendron oleander — Gr. rhodódendron, f. rhódon rose + déndron tree.

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rhododendron

rhododendronAran, Arran, baron, barren, Darren, Karen, Sharon, yarran •Biafran, saffron •plastron • Saharan • Sumatran •heron, perron •rhododendron • chevron •Aaron, Charon, Dáil Eireann •apron •matron, patron •Libran •decahedron, dodecahedron, octahedron, polyhedron, tetrahedron •children • citron • grandchildren •stepchildren • godchildren •schoolchildren •Byron, Chiron, environ, Myron, siren •sporran, warren •squadron • Cochran •Andorran, Doran, Lauren, loran •cauldron •Kieran, Madeiran, schlieren •Honduran, Van Buren •Aldebaran • Auberon • Acheron •Cameron, Decameron •cateran, Lateran •veteran •dipteran, hemipteran •lepidopteran • Lutheran

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