Rhododendron ‘Fred Peste’

hybrid rhododendron

  • © Briggs Plant Propagators

  • © Heather Leyrer

Outstanding Qualities

Red rhododendrons are high-impact shrubs that demand your attention. This cultivar has performed well at Meerkerk Rhododendron Gardens for over two decades. A tough plant, it has non-fading, cardinal-red flowers with a deep maroon-red throat and spots on the dorsal lobe. Flowers, which appear in late May, are held in flat trusses of 14. Its long, dark olive-green leaves are leathery and covered beneath with moderate orange-yellow indumentum. It is sun tolerant.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: shrub

Foliage Type: evergreen

Plant Height: 3 ft. 0 in. (0.91 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 3 ft. 0 in. (0.91 meters)

Plant Height-Mature: 5 ft. 0 in. (1.52 meters)

Plant Width-Mature: 5 ft. 0 in. (1.52 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 7 to 9

Flower Color: red

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun to light or open shade

Water Requirements: frequent to regular watering

Seasonal Interest: bright red flowers in springtime

Wildlife Associations: bees, hummingbirds

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: cream, silver, gold

Great Color Partners: bronze, dark green, chartreuse

Culture Notes
This rhododendron is easy to grow in the Pacific Northwest. Plant it in rich well-drained or sandy soil in a location with full sun to light or open shade. Rhododendrons are shallow-rooted plants requiring regular watering during dry weather. Faded flowers can be removed to give a cleaner look and new growth can be pinched to help make young plants bushier. Adult root weevils can chew on their leaves, but this is less of a problem on plants that receive more light and regular watering.