Emu Valley Newsletter – June 2024

  • Date: 30th May 2024
  • author: Maurie Kupsch


This delightful vireya rhododendron can be found growing on the Eastern, Western and Southern Highlands of Papua New Guinea, where it forms an erect shrub to 2m high, the smaller branches are densely clothed with brownish scales.

The small dark green leaves are arranged in a spiral formation. These leaves are less than 10 mm long, ovate-elliptic to rounded, pointed at the apex, shiny on the upper surface, with the under surface paler—usually with a scattering of scales. The bright to deep red flowers hang on stout pedicels, which are densely covered with scales as are the flowers giving them a white spotted appearance.

At Emu Valley Rhododendron Garden we are growing a number of plants of this species, our climate seems to suit them and with some T.L.C. should grow into interesting plants. Rhododendron womersleyi was named after John Womersley, botanist in Lae Papua New Guinea with a deep interest in Rhododendrons. Introduced into Australia by L.K. Wade in 1966.

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