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Rhododendron and azaleas come in a wide range of colors and foliage.  In their beauty they surpass virtually any other plant in the landscape.  If you are interested in learning more about growing and collecting rhododendrons and azaleas, the American Rhododendron Society is just the right society for you to join.  Its activities include national and regional meetings, publication of excellent journals, scientific studies and research.
 
Greater Philadelphia Chapter is one of the many chapters of the society.  Our chapter sponsors flower shows, plant sales, cut flower competitions (truss shows), annual banquets, picnics, program meetings with expert speakers providing exchange of advice and expertise as well as good fellowship among fellow gardeners. 
 
Every year, volunteers from our chapter collect cuttings of native and hybrid rhododendrons from the gardens of members and friends of the chapter.  We root the cuttings and later transplant them into four-inch pots.  We then sell these rare, unusual and generally unavailable varieties at a minimal cost to our members at our Plants for Members sale.  We have also begun to propagate some varieties by grafting and offer these for sale.
 
In case you were wondering, azaleas are rhododendrons. In botany, the genus is Rhododendron, with roughly 1,000 species and uncountable hybrids. The genus is divided into four sets of garden plants: large-leaf rhododendrons (the classic, also known as elepidotes), little-leaf rhododendrons (lepidotes), evergreen azaleas, and deciduous azaleas. There is a fifth group of rhododendrons, vireyas, which are tropical plants with growing conditions similar to those of orchids.

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Calendar.
March 10- 19, Philadelphia Flower Show, Pennsylvania Convention Center.

April 8, Saturday, 6:00 p.m. Greater Philadelphia Chapter Annual Banquet, Whitemarsh Valley Country Club. Speaker: Janet Novak, "Wildflowers of Our Region"

April 27- 30, ARS Annual Convention, Eureka, CA.

May 11- 13. Greater Philadelphia Chapter Plant Sale, Morris Arboretum.

May 14, Sunday, Joint Greater Philadelphia/ Valley Forge Flower Show ( Truss Show), Jenkins Arboretum.

June 11, Sunday, Greater Philadelphia Picnic and Annual Meeting at the home of Cathy Keim.

June 25, Sunday, Valley Forge Chapter Annual Meeting and Picnic.  Location TBA.

August 20, Sunday, District 8 Cutting Exchange and Auction.  Location TBA.

September 10, Sunday, Greater Philadelphia/ Valley Forge Plants for Members, Morris Arboretum.

October 15, Sunday, Greater Philadelphia Chapter meeting.  Speaker: Lois Sheinfeld.  Morris Arboretum.