Some Hybrids of the Fortunei Series and Subseries
By Izetta Renton, North Bend, Washington
Last fall the rhododendron study group of the Seattle Chapter decided to do some research on the different colored hybrids of the fortunei series. I was asked and later reported on the hybrids of yellow, cream and orange shades. This research was most interesting, and though I had not seen some of the plants in bloom we enjoyed the study very much. Primarily we were interested in the following species that had been used for parents. R. fortunei, decorum, discolor, griffithianum, cordiobasis and orbiculare.
R. griffithianum crosses.
Back in the 1920's Mr. Smith of Penjerrick, crossed R. griffithianum with campylocarpum var. elatum and raised some very nice lemon yellow flowers. The group was named 'Penjerrick' and many of the fine ones were of pink shades.
R. 'Jennifer' (griffithianum x campylocarpum) by G. Johnstone at Trewithen is a nice plant, resembling 'Penjerrick' F1 with creamy bells on long red pedicils. The truss is loose, but the plant has very good habit.
R. 'Jeritsa' (griffithianum x 'Lady Bessborough') was made by Rothschild and has a heavy truss of shallow funnel campanulate bells of mimosa yellow with small crimson spots.
R. 'Dr. Stocker' raised by Dr. Stocker (griffithianum. x caucasicum) var. album. Cream, widely campanulate bells, four to five inches across sprinkled with a few red to brown spots. There are eight to ten flowers in a truss, and they show in the very early spring.
R. 'Mrs. Randal Davidson' (griffithianum x campylocarpum) was made by Mangles in 1884. Hookers dwarf type form of campylocarpum was used and a compact hybrid resulted. This type proved to be a good parent many times.
R. 'Jordon' (griffithianum x dichroanthum) No description of this plant could be found.
The following lists of hybrids have one parent a hybrid F1 and the other a species, or both parents F1hybrids.
R. 'Moonglow' ('Loderi Venus' x Lady Bessborough') was made by Rothschild in 1947. A beautiful shrub here in my garden it has long glossy leaves, and is rather compact, with flowers a good shade of yellow.
R. 'Jasen' ('Penjerrick' x lacteum). Very little in the way of a description has been printed about this hybrid but it has been shown in shows in England.
R. 'Mariloo' ('Dr. Stocker F1 x lacteum). This makes a good woodland plant with large deep green leaves, tapered toward the end, and four inch funnel shaped bloom. The texture of the flowers is heavy, and they are pale yellow stained crimson in the throat.
R. 'Mrs. Betty Robertson' ('Mrs. Lindsey Smith' x campylocarpum) was made by Koster. It is a medium compact grower with nice foliage. It has a well rounded truss of rich yellow, with carmine blotch in the throat. The plant has withstood zero weather here.
R. 'Damaris' ('Dr. Stocker' x campylocarpum). This is a very nice plant here in part shade on the edge of the woodland. This is a medium grower with upright slender branches and pale yellow flowers. Three other crosses that are somewhat like this plant are 'Zuyder Zee', 'Greenfich' and 'Jersey Cream'.
R. 'Edusa' ('Penjerrick x campylocarpum). Made by Aberconway in 1941. Have found no further description on this plant.
R. 'Phryne' (campylocarpum x 'Loderi') Also by Aberconway in 1933 has a large yellow truss and is considered a fine plant.
R. 'Carita' ('Naomi x campylocarpum). Made by Rothschild in 1935. This is a plant of fine habit with beautiful foliage and widely shaped pale yellow bloom.
R. 'Idealist' (wardii x 'Naomi'). This plant is well known to most of us, and grows to perfection in our gardens. Greenish yellow flowers in mid May.
R 'Kingcup' (dichroanthum x 'Bustard') This hybrid blooms late in the season and has a flat truss of Indian yellow.
R. 'Emerald Isle' ('Idealist x 'Naomi') This plant is from the R. H. S. gardens at Wisley, and has chartreuse yellow green bloom.
R. 'Harvest Moon' ('Mrs. Lindsey Smith x campylocarpum) was made in 1940 and is a compact grower with handsome foliage, and deep cream flowers.
R. 'W. Leith' ('Loderi' x decorum). A good truss of upstanding pale yellow flowers.
R. 'Zuyder Zee' ('Mrs. Lindsey Smith' x campylocarpum). This well known hybrid by Koster is a medium shrub, and does well in the woodland, where its chartreuse bloom are very nice.
R. 'Francis Hanger' (dichroanthum x 'Isabella'). This has very handsome foliage and an excellent habit of growth. The flat topped truss of seven large fleshy flowers have deep cut lobes with frilled margins. A deep yellow color.
R. 'Diane' (campylocarpum x 'Mrs. Lindsey Smith'). This hybrid by Koster has a tidy growing habit something on the order of 'Zuyder Zee'. I like the yellow to green bloom very much.
R. 'Rickshaw' ('Golden Horn' x 'Lady Bessborough'). The plant has very unusual colored bloom usually described as biscuit color.
R. 'Hawk' (wardii x 'Lady Bessborough). There are several forms of this plant in our country. The form I have has sulphur yellow flowers, ten to the truss. I have been told this cross was remade, and another type of R. wardii was used, this cross resulted in the variety 'Crest'. 'Crest' is much the finer of the varieties that have come to this country.
R. 'Jalisco' ('Lady Bessborough x 'Dido'). My plant of this variety is a nice shade of yellow. So far it is 3½ feet in height. The variety 'Goshawk' grows to ten feet. There are several variants of this cross, the best have campanulate flowers of good yellows.
R. 'Lionels Triumph' (lacteum x 'Naomi'). This is reported to be the last hybrid made by L. de Rothschild in 1945, and is magnificent. The campanulate flowers are three inches long and four inches wide, and are of Dresden Yellow color, with 15 to 18 flowers to the truss.
R. 'Repose' (discolor x lacteum) Slocock received a A. M. in 1956 on this hybrid. The flowers are whitish cream with a green tinge in the throat.
R. 'Day Dream' ('Lady Bessborough' x griersonianum). The variety 'Golden Bell' has quite a bit of yellow in its make-up. This cross has been used many times in later hybridization.
R. 'Goldsworth Orange' (dichroanthum x discolor). This is a spreading bush with pale orange flowers. Very hardy and late blooming this cross gave a large range of colored hybrids, and one called 'Champagne' is a golden yellow.
R. 'Margaret Dunn' (discolor x 'Fabia'). A late blooming plant of medium habit. The variety 'Golden Bell' has more yellow in the throat.
R. 'China' (fortunei x wightii). An old hybrid that makes a rather stout plant with good foliage. The flower could be called a dark cream with red in the throat.
R. 'Marcia' (campylocarpum. x 'Gladys'). A delightful yellow colored flower. I don't know how tall the plant will eventually get, but mine is not very tall.
R. 'Mary Swathling' (campylocarpum x fortunei). There are but a few plants of this in the United States. It makes a very nice truss of creamy yellow.
R. 'Lady Bessborough' (discolor x campylocarpum var. elatum). This is an old hybrid that gave a lot of variation in its seedlings. Blooms in late May.
R. 'Inamorata' (wardii x discolor). A robust grower with pale yellow flat campanulate flowers on long pedicils.
R. 'Juisepa' (dichroanthum x 'Day Dream'). This is a low growing compact shrub with orange bells. I have made several crosses using this plant but it is far too early to foretell anything.
R. 'Gladys' (fortunei x campylocarpum var. elatum). There is a wide variation in these plants, some pure yellow and some with a pink flush. I like this plant very much.
R. 'Letty Edwards' (fortunei x campylocarpum var. elatum). Here in my woodland it grows into a 6 foot plant with pink to yellow flowers.
R. 'Goldfort' ('Goldsworth Yellow' x fortunei). For me this is a rather stout flat topped shrub of four feet, and I think one of Slococks best hybrids. A rounded truss of lemon yellow flowers suffused with pink.
R. 'Prelude' (fortunei x wardii). The last cross made by Rothschild, and a pleasing hybrid. The primrose flowers are carried in a globe-shaped ten-flowered truss.
R. 'Dido' (decorum x dichroanthum). This is a low growing compact plant to 2 1/2 feet for me. It is a sort of tailored looking shrub with soft orange trumpets.
R. 'Jocelyn' (calophytum x lacteum). This is a large flowered plant with creamy white trusses of 22 flowers.
Hybridizers in this country have also been at work on this series.
R. 'Seattle Gold' ('Diva' x 'Lady Bessborough'). Yellow to orange.
R. 'Lemon Bells' (decorum x 'Fabia'). This hybrid by Rudolph Henny has large bells like old fashioned cow bell and are of pale clear yellow.
R. 'Fawn' (fortunei x 'Fabia'). This is a tall plant by Del James. The flowers are rather flat and recurving up to 5 inches wide. Salmon shaded to yellow center.
R. 'Gold Mohur' ('Day Dream' x 'Margaret Dunn') by Lester Brandt. A three foot compact shrub with flowers three inches wide yellow spotted green.
R. 'Judy' (fortunei x campylocarpum). Del James.
R. 'Golden West' (fortunei x campylocarpum). Del James.
R. 'Ray' (fortunei x 'Idealist'). A rounded truss of Dresden yellow flowers, by Del James.
R. 'Full Moon' ('Hawk' x 'Adrian Koster') by John Henny. The plants I have seen were excellent in flower and foliage.
R. 'Lems Goal' ('Lady Bessborough' x 'Azor') Raised by Halfdan Lem. Yellow orange.
R. 'Ollie Olson' (discolor x campylocarpum) raised by H. Lem. I like this plant very much, Good sized clear yellow flowers make tip the trusses.
R. 'Autumn Gold' (discolor x 'Fabia') by Van Veen. I have heard this is a good plant.
R. 'Leaburg' (dichroanthum x 'Penjerrick') By Del James, A very fleshy flower of orange.
R. 'Little Pudding' (decorum x 'Fabia'), Large flowers of salmon to biscuit by Rudolph Henny.