R. sichotense

Imagine these flowers in January or February! This plant will let you know that spring is right around the corner. Coming from Siberia, it’s a hardy survivor that has some more surprises. It will lose most of its leaves in the fall in a glorious show of yellow and maroon. The leaves that remain will have a maroon cast all winter before returning to green in the spring. And all the leaves are wonderfully aromatic.

R. sichotense grows into a willowy shrub, usually more upright than broad. It may reach six feet in height in ten years. It’s happy in a sunny exposure. Like all rhodies, it appreciates good drainage.

Fertilize sparingly at Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day.

This is a very useful species because of its hardiness and early bloom time. It will take pruning so you can keep it to a size and shape of your liking.