|Rhododendron 'PJM Hybrid'
Botanical Name: Rhododendron 'PJM Hybrid'
Various shades of lavender-purple cover the plant in early spring.
Dark green in summer, turning a purple hue in winter.
Upright rounded form.
4' to 8' tall.
Partial sun to full shade.
None - hybrid
Description: This group of rhododendrons was hybridized by Ed Mezitt of Weston Nurseries in l938 and named for his father, Peter J. Mezitt, the founder of that nursery. They are the result of a cross between R. carolinianum and a selected form of R. dauricum sempervirens, an early blooming purple species, sent to the Mezitt’s by a missionary in China. The plant habit of 'P.J.M'. is very much like R. carolinianum although a little more upright. The leaves also look a good deal like R. carolinianum, although they show more purplish tones in the winter. The flowers are a lavender-purple, a welcome sight since they open very early in the spring. I have to laugh when I look in several of the catalogs and see the ultimate height listed as either 4 feet or 6 feet. I have a plant at my house that is over 8 feet tall at present and still going strong. When this variety was released, it was released as “P.J.M. Hybrids” and the plants in the trade are the result of propagation from several clones. Therefore, there can be quite a bit of variation between plants even from the same nursery. Over the years we have selected two of the best clones from the several we were growing and at this point all our 'P.J.M. Hybrids' are from these clones. This makes our crop more uniform and better than in the past.