OUR FRONT COVER
R. 'Kilimanjaro' F.C.C.
P. H. Brydon
About seven years ago, while Director of the Strybing Arboretum in San Francisco, I received a scion of K. 'Kilimanjaro' F.C.C. from Exbury which subsequently flowered in 1967. On our front cover is a picture of this excellent hybrid taken at Strybing, but, alas, it is no longer there since some enthusiast with excellent taste but little compunction stole the only plant. If any of our readers should come across this plant in the San Francisco area, I should be most interested in knowing where, since to my knowledge this was the only F.C.C. form in the area.
In his superb book, THE ROTHSCHILD RHODODENDRONS, Peter Barber describes it as follows "Kilimanjaro...(elliottii x 'Dusky Maid')...shrub... of average height...its large flowers "burning with celestial light...rich and luminous red...in round dramatic trusses of some eighteen blossoms...not flowering until June." He gives it a British rating of C or D and four stars. I would judge it to be superior to either of its near relatives, 'Grenadier' or 'Jutland', and certainly every bit as hardy, perhaps more so. In San Francisco, it flowered in late May and I suspect it would come into flower in the Pacific Northwest about early June. Tentatively, I would rate it as 5/3 and hardy to +5.