RHODODENDRONS FOR SMALL SPACES
Today, the huge, blowsy hybrids of yesteryear have been largely replaced with hybrids stemming from Rhododendron yakushimanum. This compact shrub has been used to produce thousands of crosses in the last 20 years; plants that are better suited to smaller gardens, such as creamy ‘Babette’, clear pink ‘Birthday Girl’, coral-coloured ‘Dopey’ and scarlet ‘Fred Peste’. At Ramster Gardens, owner Miranda Gunn has created a plot showing how the latest dwarf varieties can fit into the tiniest flower bed or large container. Great rhododendrons for smaller spaces include the pale yellow ‘Wren’, hairy-leaved ‘Woolly Dane’, soft white ‘Tinkerbird’ and the clear pink ‘Winsome’. Small azaleas include hot pink ‘Arabesque’ and cherry red ‘Florida’. Miranda has suggested useful things for interplanting too, such as hellebores and beautiful blue lithodora.
Rhododendron ‘Wren’ is a dwarf evergreen growing to 16in (40cm) high and 3ft (1m) wide.