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Rehderodendron - Growing Guide
Growing Rehderodendron macrocarpum
We hope shortly to be offering other new species of rehderodendron. However, for the moment, we have to settle for R. macrocarpum which is a startling flowering tree which is, unfortunately, still not as widely grown as it should be on merit.
R. macrocarpum grows to around 20-30ft in Cornwall. It is a single stemmed tree with expanding horizontal size branches which bear numerous racemes of six to ten cup shaped creamy white flowers on last year’s new growth which can be up to 2½in across. The flowers emerge just before or with the leaves in wetter springs. They are just over by mid May and have not yet made it onto our Chelsea stands.
The leaves are oblong and glossy while the new growth shoots are red. There can often be a second flush of new growth later in the summer if it has been wet.
One of the most impressive features of this tree is its enormous fruits. The sappy outer coat is green at first, turning pinkish-red by August and finally brown when ripe. The first oblong hanging fruits, which are 2-3in long, are clearly visible in early July and start to colour where the sun catches them.
The seeds should be removed from the dry fruits in autumn. There will normally be one to three seeds in each. These should be sown straight away into the cold frame. They may well only all germinate in the second spring after sowing so patience is needed and no mice in the meantime. We have detailed article on how to collect,store and propagate seeds if you wish to learn more.
This tree is easy to grow and should grace far more woodland garden collections.
Images to follow