Rhododendron • シャクナゲ • 石楠花 • shakunage
It’s very noticeable, as it brightly pops out early April each year just right past the bench along the E path, at the beginning of area I; it’s a hybrid, probably of european breeding, considering its showiness (Japanese rhododendrons are usually smaller and more dainty) and it has no name that we know of. It’s very good looking with pinkish tinted buds opening to white and bright flowers.
From wikipedia: […] Rhododendron is a genus characterized by shrubs and small to (rarely) large trees, the smallest species growing to 10–100 cm (3.9–39 in) tall, and the largest, R. giganteum, reported to over 30 m (98 ft) tall. The leaves are spirally arranged; leaf size can range from 1–2 cm (0.39–0.79 in) to over 50 cm (20 in), exceptionally 100 cm (39 in) in R. sinogrande. They may be either evergreen or deciduous. In some species, the undersides of the leaves are covered with scales (lepidote) or hairs (indumentum). Some of the best known species are noted for their many clusters of large flowers. There are alpine species with small flowers and small leaves, and tropical species such as section Vireya that often grow as epiphytes. Species in this genus may be part of the heath complex in oak-heath forests in eastern North America.