Rhododendron Research Focus of District XI Meeting
Kay Moats, Mt. Prospect, Illinois
Rhododendron research was the focus of the District XI meeting, October 11th and 12th at Northbrook, Illinois, sponsored by the Midwest Chapter under the leadership of Dr. George Gray, conference program chairman, and Dr. Eugene Paschall, chapter president.
Featured speakers included Dr. Harold Pellett, Professor of Horticulture at the University of Minnesota, a recipient of a number of ARS Research Foundation grants. Dr. Pellett has been the prime mover behind the super hardy "Lights" hybrid azaleas. Other speakers were Dr. John Sabucco on "The Best of the Hardiest", Kathleen Freeland on "The Best of Weston," and Al Smith on "Rhododendron Research in Canada." Dr. Sabucco is the author of a book by the same name as the title of his speech, and is the developer of the first new U.S. hardiness map in 20 years. Kathleen Freeland highlighted the new introductions and the propagating methods of the late Ed Mezitt at Weston Nurseries. Al Smith discussed the breeding and testing of rhododendrons at Vineland Station in Ontario, and described the promising new plants they developed.
Dr. Donald Paden, Research Chairman
of the Midwest Chapter and District XI
Director, presents ARS Research Foundation
check to Dr. Harold Pellett, Professor
of Horticulture, University of Minnesota.
Two other recipients of ARS Research Foundation grants also attended the meeting, Dr. Jack Paxton of the University of Illinois and Dr. Don Paden, both members of the Midwest Chapter. Dr. Paxton spoke briefly about his research project, "Biological Control of Phytophthora Root Rot in Rhododendron", now in its early stages. Dr. Paden and his collaborator, Dr. Martin Meyer, are investigating "In Vitro Colchine Treatment of Rhododendron".