Six on Saturday | Dazzle

When the sun shines in Cornwall there can be no better place in the world. And May is a perfect time to visit a Cornish garden which is famous for Magnolias, Camellias, Rhododendrons and Azaleas. May is R&A time so here are my six this week from Glendurgan Gardens on the Helford River.

(1) White rhododendrons are so heavily scented they almost make you pass out as you pass by: I just love the way that in many cases the buds are a deeper shade than the actual flower.

(2) The Yellow Rhododendrons and Azaleas light up the shady areas.

(3) The large Cornish red was in evidence all around the garden though the one that famously sat behind a curved bench at the entrance to the garden has been removed.

(4) Soft shades of Lavender stood out in the meadow area, close to a Magnolia, and two magnificent Davidia involucrata (the dove-tree, handkerchief tree, pocket handkerchief tree, or ghost tree). We’ll take a look at those in a future post.

(5) And some of the most exquisite, in my opinion, are the delicate pink ones.

(6) But it is the stunning orange and the magnificent ‘fruit salad‘  (I am going to cheat and put these together), seen below together with a yellow variety, which draws your eye from across the garden, that are my favourites.

This post is especially for my friend Jo, who adores Rhododendrons. And if you are wondering what the difference is between an Azalea and a Rhodie then this will explain all.

Rhododendrons and azaleas are both from the genus Rhododendron. On average (but there are exceptions), rhododendrons are larger shrubs than are azalea plants, and they have larger leaves. Also, in general, azalea flowers have five stamens, while the rhododendron flowers have ten stamens. … Finally, unlike rhododendrons, many azalea plants are deciduous.”

See here for the participant’s guide.

Six on Saturday


  1. kathysharp2013 says:

    Beautiful. I did get to see Trebah gardens on my visit to Cornwall last year – Glendurgan will have to be on this year’s list!

    1. Heyjude says:

      Trebah is probably the better of the two, but we have NT membership so Glendurgan is ‘free’ for us. It is a delightful garden in spring. Not so much in the summer months.

  2. beetleypete says:

    Love those plants, Jude. Apparently, the soil here is not acidic enough to grow them well.But I have your lovely photos instead.
    Best wishes, Pete. x

    1. Heyjude says:

      I haven’t PH tested my soil, but I haven’t got room for any of these shrubs. Luckily plenty of gardens around here grow them.

  3. janesmudgeegarden says:

    Oh, I can see why you like the pink ones, Jude, they’re just gorgeous. But fruit salad is stunning too. How could one ever choose the best? Lovely post.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Fruit salad are my favourite, so many pretty clashing colours together. Badly worded!

  4. Mala Burt says:

    Gorgeous photos. The size of some of these remind me of one trip to Ireland where I saw cars with blooming rhodo branches decorating the grill. I was horrified until I saw the rhododendrons that were twenty feet tall and required a special machine to keep the road clear. Must be all that peaty soil.

  5. Pete Hillman says:

    These are goregous, Jude! I have always adored these shrubs.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I’m not such a fan, though I have been known to have and kill azaleas. But there is no doubt that in a setting like this they really are show-offs.

  6. fredgardener says:

    Wonderful Fruit salad one ! Thank you for sharing. Maybe beacause I almost have all colors except yellow and orange : in a wish-list

    1. Heyjude says:

      Yes, the yellow and the orange ones are rather gorgeous.

  7. Sue says:

    Heartwarming post, Jude!

    1. Heyjude says:

      Hope Jo likes it!

      1. Sue says:

        Well, you can never tell!!

        1. restlessjo says:

          Excuse me- I’m back now so you can stop talking about me. And I love it 🙂 🙂

        2. Sue says:


        3. Heyjude says:

          Oh, good! They were taken with you in mind.

        4. restlessjo says:

          Cheers darlin xx

  8. Ali says:

    Who…those are just stunning. The first photo especially is incredibly beautiful. And that final one with the apricot and purple!

    1. Heyjude says:

      Cornish gardens are definitely good in spring.

    2. Ali says:

      Woh, I mean!

  9. restlessjo says:

    The last photo is my favourite. 🙂 Thanks, Jude. It’s a lovely post. The thing I like best about them is watching them unfold. We have one that starts off darkest pink and ends up white. It’s a neat trick. 🙂 🙂

    1. Heyjude says:

      Yes, the changes in colour are quite amazing. Does your white one have scent then? Some of these you could smell from quite a distance.

      1. restlessjo says:

        Yes but not so strong as that x

        1. Heyjude says:

          You will miss the English spring, but then I suppose you will get the Portuguese spring in February! So many lovely flowers there then. And what is this I hear about you going to Tavira soon?

        2. restlessjo says:

          Just a quick visit. Nothing happening with our house and I thought Mick might need cheering up. 🙂 🙂

  10. Beautiful pictures. I’ve been to Trebah several times but not Glendurgan. Drove by it last weekend but the non gardener wasn’t keen!

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