Name: Rhododendron Daursky – Rhododendron Daursky
Dauric rhododendron (Rhododendron dauricum); heather family (Egisaceae); Rhododendron Daura
If anyone happened to be in the Far East in the middle of May, he will always remember the hills burning with crimson fire. This is a flowering rhododendron Daura (locally known as a common sedum). Due to the pleasant smell of the flowers, the local population often uses them for salads and various food additives. The plant attracts not only adults, but also children. Rhododendron flowers are a favorite delicacy of local children: they are sweet due to their high nectar content.
Daur rhododendron is a branchy bush up to 2-3 m tall. The leaves of the plant are leathery, elliptical, the flowers are relatively large, bright pink, with a purple tint. They usually bloom in May-early June, sometimes re-blooming is observed in August-September. The plant grows in pine, spruce, cedar, but more often in deciduous forests. It often occurs on stony mountain slopes, rock outcrops, rocks, and mountain river banks. Common on burns and clearings. In the mountains, it grows up to the upper limit of the forest, often forming solid thickets. Widespread in the southern part of Western and southern Eastern Siberia. There is especially a lot of Daur rhododendron in Transbaikalia. In the west, the limit of its growth passes through the eastern districts of Tomsk region and Eastern Altai.
In the middle zone of Russia, in February and early March, they often buy seemingly lifeless twigs, which then unexpectedly bloom with tender lilac flowers that appear even before the leaves bloom.
It must be remembered that the plant does not recover well after harvesting the twigs. Therefore, its collection for bouquets should be limited.
A relative of Daura rhododendron grows in Ukraine – yellow rhododendron (R. luteum, synonym – Azalea pontica). This plant occurs in separate groups in the east of the Western Polissia in moist oak-pine forests. In folk medicine, rhododendron yellow is prescribed for polyarthritis, arthrosis, inflammation of tendons and radiculitis, homeopaths use it to treat prostate diseases. The plant is toxic, so its use requires caution.