Sunday, 10 May 2009
Curtis's Botanical Magazine, table 4968, vol. 81, (1857)
From the collection of Messrs. Standish and Noble, Bagshot Nursery, where it flowered in April of the past year (1856) in a cool frame. It is a native of rocky valleys and open spurs in the mountains of Sikkim-Himalaya, elevation 11-14,000 feet above the level of the sea, and there abundant. At such an elevation it is natural to expect that the plant would be hardy in the open air in Britain; and so this and other such Himalayan Rhododendrons are: but, unfortunately, the flowering season is so early that we cannot hope to see them come to perfection without the protection of a frame or cool greenhouse, admitting plenty of air when the weather is mild. Thus treated, this species will be found to deserve the praises it has received from Dr. Hooker in the following description.
DESCR. "A small bush six feet high, rounded in form, of a bright cheerful green hue; and which, when loaded with its iflorescence of surpassing delicacy and grace, claims precedence over its more gaudy congeners, and has always been regarded by me as the most charming of the Sikkim Rhododendrons. The plant exhales a grateful honeyed flavour from its lovely bells, and a resinous sweet odour from the stipitate glands of the petioles, pedicels, calyx, and capsules. Leaves on slender pelioles, three-fourths of an inch long, coriaceous, but not thick in the texture, two or three and a half inches long, one and three-quarters to two inches broad, cordate at the base, rounded and mucronate at the apex; in all characters, except the evanescent, glandular pubescence, and spherical buds, undistinguishable from Rhododendron Thomsoni. Flowers horizontal and nodding. Corolla truly campanulate, delicate in texture, tinged of a sulphur hue and always spotless, nearly two inches long, broader across the lobes, which are finely veined. The pedicels of the capsules radiate horizontally from the apices of the ramuli, and the capsules curve upwards with a semicircular arc; they are about an inch long, always loosely covered with stipitate glands."-J. D. Hook.in Rhod. of Sik. Himal.
Fig. 1. Stamen. 2. Calyx and pistil. 3. Transverse section of ovary :-magnified. 4. Capsule:-nat. size.
FEBRUARY 1ST, 1857.