Rhododendron ‘Lee’s Dark Purple’ Flowering

You may recall that last year when I planted this Rhodo it was pretty late in the season. It was actually the last of the ‘Lee’s Dark Purple’ plants at the store. My first choice would have been ‘Nova Zembla’ but they were long gone so I figured it was a fairly close alternate. Umm. Yes and no. I won’t say I’m disappointed by this plant in any way, but seeing at work both ‘Nova Zembla’ (The red is stunning and the dark markings only make it better) and ‘Wojenar’s Purple’ (Same dark coloured buds as Lee’s, but the flowers stay dark when they open with the same dark spots as Nova) I can’t help but feel like given the option I would have gone with something else. That said I’ve brought myself around and find ‘Lee’s Dark Purple’ to be attractive in its own way when not being compared to some of the other options for darker flowered Rhododendrons.

Rhododendron 'Lee's Dark Purple'
Dark purple buds…

Rhododendron 'Lee's Dark Purple'_1
… which actually give some nice contrast with light purple flowers.

The brown spots on the plants at work this year (which I was looking at before my own plant flowered) were a little bit muddier, here they are clearly spots on a purple background rather than on a muddy brown-purple background. It makes a bigger difference than you might think.

Photography Setup
And for fun here’s part of my lighting setup while taking the open flower shot (You can also see a lot of the new growth that’s coming in this year, plant looks healthy and that’s a great start).


About Andrew

Plant lover living in Toronto, Canada where I grow a wide range of plants in a very small space.
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6 Responses to Rhododendron ‘Lee’s Dark Purple’ Flowering

  1. Martha says:

    That’s a very nice Rhodo. There are so many available for the garden that it’s hard to choose.

  2. Bom says:

    Wow! I’m not sure what impresses me more. The Rhodo or the lighting setup.

  3. Scott says:

    Love the two-tone effect…and love anything purple 🙂

  4. Tracy says:

    Thanks for showing off your camera setup. It’s always nice to see the “behind the scenes” shots. Now I have a better idea of how to duplicate them.

  5. Pingback: Rhododendron Save The Date Postcard | Riosamba's Treasure Troves

  6. ricki says:

    Oho! So THAT’S why your photos look so much better than mine.

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