The University Gardens
The Collections

The Rhododendron cultivar collection

Showcasing the diversity of Rhododendron cultivars, from the latest novelties, to the oldest English and German varieties

Rhododendron 'Kimbeth' in the cultivars collection
Bjørn Moe

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In a genus where nature itself has produced such a diversity of species with great variation in growth forms and flower colours, one would think that further meddling was unnecessary. However, during the millions of years of their diversification the species adapted to their specific habitats, many in the mountains of the Himalayas, and they can be difficult or impossible to maintain in gardens elsewhere.

Through crossing and selection in cultivation many cultivars have been produced that perform better in different climates and which can combine and even accentuate desirable attributes of different species.

Nearly 25,000 cultivars have been registered and even more have been made. We display around 500 of the best, aiming to show the diversity that is available and present the best cultivars from different eras and from different countries: everything from the latest novelties, to the oldest English and German varieties.

The collections are presented in a series of themed displays, with descriptions of some of the more important innovations and innovators in the history of Rhododendron cultivation. You can browse these as you walk through the gardens and find extended material and additional photos by downloading our brochures and following the links below.  

Back to Rhododendron collections

Themed displays