R. grande is a stately rhododendron with an open, tree like structure. Its narrow, long leaves are covered on the back with a plastered silver indumentum. Early in the season, usually in February or March, R. grande blooms a lovely white with purple nectar pouches deep in the throat.
R. grande makes a bold statement as a container plant – which is perfect because in cold under 15 degrees (F.), you will want to protect it in garage or greenhouse.
R. grande is native to the south side of the Himalayas – Nepal, Sikkim, Bhutan and on into northern India, where it may grow to 20 feet. In a container, it may reach six feet in 10 years.
Grande will like: Afternoon shade, shelter from cold (below 15 – 20 degrees) and strong winds, small amounts of fertilizer on Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day, gentle watering that keeps it moist, and good drainage with well-aerated soil.