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NC Native Plant Society:
Plant Details

Rhododendron viscosum

Swamp Azalea, Clammy Azalea

Scientific Name:

Rhododendron viscosum

Genus:

Rhododendron

Species Epithet:

viscosum

Common Name:

Swamp Azalea, Clammy Azalea

Plant Type

Shrub

Life Cycle

Perennial

Plant Family

Ericaceae (Heath Family)

Native/Alien:

NC Native

Size:

3-6 ft., 6-12 ft.

Bloom Color(s):

White

Light:

Part Shade - 2 to 6 hours of sun per day

Soil Moisture:

Moist, Wet

Bloom Time:

May, June, July

Growing Area:

Mountains, Piedmont, Sandhills, Coastal Plain

Habitat Description:

Var. serrulatum: Bogs, pocosins, wet pine savannas. Rare in NC Piedmont, common in Coastal Plain.
Var. viscosum: Moist streambanks, shrub balds, and other moist habitats. Common in NC Mountains and Piedmont, uncommon in Coastal Plain. Flowers later than var. serrulatum.

Leaf Arrangement:

Alternate

Leaf Retention:

Deciduous

Leaf Type:

Leaves veined, not needle-like or scale-like

Leaf Form:

Simple

Life Cycle:

Perennial

Wildlife Value:

Has some wildlife value

Landscape Value:

Recommended and Available

Notes:

Members of the genus Rhododendron support the specialized bee, Andrena cornelli.
2 varieties of Rhododendron viscosum in NC [see Habitat Description].

Swamp Azalea

Found in bogs, pocosins, wet savannas, stream sides and other moist habitats, Swamp Azalea will also do well in gardens with some shade and average moisture. It blooms late for an azalea, after its leaves are out.

image

Paynter, Wilmington

Flowers

Scent is spicy and sweet. The common name, Clammy Azalea, comes from the stickiness of the flowers.

image

Close-up of flowers and buds covered with sticky brown-colored glands

garden in Orange County, NC

The Scientific Name is Rhododendron viscosum. You will likely hear them called Swamp Azalea, Clammy Azalea. This picture shows the Close-up of flowers and buds covered with sticky brown-colored glands of Rhododendron viscosum

Bettina Darveaux

Terminal bud and nice Fall color in early November.

garden in Orange County, NC

The Scientific Name is Rhododendron viscosum. You will likely hear them called Swamp Azalea, Clammy Azalea. This picture shows the Terminal bud and nice Fall color in early November. of Rhododendron viscosum

Bettina Darveaux

Links:

USDA PLANTS Database Record



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