A deciduous azalea up to 9 ft high in its native state; young wood bristly Leaves mostly obovate, some oblong, tapering at both ends, 11⁄2 to 31⁄2 in. long, one-third to half as wide, green on both sides with a few scattered hairs above, bristly on the midrib beneath and on the margins. Flowers faintly scented, in clusters of six or more, the corolla-tube hairy, pink, 3⁄4 in. long; the five lobes paler, expanding, and giving the flower a diameter of 11⁄2 to 2 in.; stalk 1⁄3 to 1⁄2 in. long, bristly like the small calyx; stamens five, pinkish coloured, standing out well beyond the corolla; seed-vessels 3⁄4 in. long, bristly. Blossoms in May. (s. Azalea ss. Luteum)
Native of eastern N. America; introduced by Peter Collinson in 1734. It is one of the chief parents of the great race of garden azaleas, but is itself very rarely seen now. The flowers appear to be variable in colour, even in a wild state, although of some shade of red or pink, or purplish. Of the N. American azaleas, whose flowers expand before the leaves, this differs from R. calendulaceum in the longer-tubed, differently coloured corolla, and in the bristly midrib of the leaf, and from R. canescens in the hairy, not glandular, corolla-tube.