In the midst of rhododendron season I just ran across an article by a landscaper commenting that rhodies "have been out of style" but are now trending back "in." I was surprised. It was like learning that denim was out but is now back in...I had completely missed the dip.
I first met up with rhodies while living in Alabama, where I also loved azaleas every spring.
These are crazy, over-the-top blooms. When did they go out of fashion?
When we moved to western Oregon I was so happy to see rhodies thriving in the climate here.
They look like they'd be a lot of trouble, but they are sooo not-fussy. They love the wet winters and do fine in the warm dry summer. They don't seem prone to insects and disease.
Not having a green thumb, these are plants that will actually grow well in my yard. The deer don't bother them, and one doesn't have to baby them like rose bushes.