World Plants Logo

search the world

Woody > Rhododendron > Rhododendron yedoense > Rhododendron yedoense var. poukhanense

Rhododendron yedoense

var. poukhanense

Korean Azalea

Origin:  South Korea
            Mike's Opinion

this is Mike


Korean Azalea is an interesting plant that has both landscape and medication values. Its flower blooms in rose to pale lilac-purple colour with flecks that give a beautiful spring colour. Its foliage colour changes from deep green to orange-red in autumn that gives an autumn interest. It has yellowish-brown hair in early stages that turn grey brown as it matures. It is not usually edible because it is poisonous, but through the professionals, it could become a medication to prevent or treat neurodegenerative diseases, such as AD and Parkinson’s disease.

Michael Pascoe, NDP., ODH., CLT., MSc. (Plant Conservation)


Shrub (deciduous)
USDA Hardiness Zone
4 - 9
Canadian Hardiness Zone
3a - 8a
RHS Hardiness Zone
H3 - H8
Temperature (°C)
Temperature (°F)
1 - 2 m
2 - 4 m
Description and Growing Information
Flowering Period
General Description
Korean Azalea is a low to medium-sized shrub which is evergreen in mild winter climates, but deciduous in cold winter climates. In spring, it has a deep green foliage. The leaves get thicker and narrower during summer, and their color turns into attractive orange-red in autumn.
Mass or group planting is recommended because it can tolerate rabbits, and attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
It is best to have acidic, dense, organically rich, medium moisture but well-drained soil. It does not like wet soil and it could cause root rot. It is best to plant in part to full sun sheltered areas, and ensure the root does not dry out. It has a shallow root system that can retain moisture and stabilize soil temperatures in organic mulch, but it should not be planted around shrubs. If attempting to plant Rhododendron in clay soils, raised planting beds are recommended.
Semi-upright crown shape with dense branching.
ID Characteristic
This plant is poisonous, therefore, it is not edible. Although, it has been used in East Asia for medication purposes. The bark of this plant is known to prevent or treat neurodegenerative diseases such as AD and Parkinson’s disease.
This plant is susceptible to many insects and diseases such as canker, crown rot, root rot, leaf spot, rust, powdery mildew, aphids, borers, lace bugs, leaf hoppers, mealy bugs, mites, nematodes, scale, thrips and whitefly. It is known to have good resistance to root rot.
East China, South Korea, Japan.
Bark/Stem Description
The bark has yellowish-brown-coloured strigose hairs on new shoots. As it gets mature, its colour turns into grey brown and it loses its hair.
Flower/Leaf Bud Description
It is a torch shaped brown bud surrounded by 2 leaves, and it is covered with white hairs.
Leaf Description
Leaves are glabrous deep green colour during spring and turns into orange-red colour in autumn. Leaves are alternately arranged and its size is about 3-8 cm. It is simple long narrow elliptic shape leaves. Leaves have hairs on both sides and especially near veins. Their inner upper part has dark red spots. Leaf size varies: 3 - 8 cm in length.
Flower Description
Flowers are rose to pale lilac-purple with flecks. The flower opens before or with leaves. The corolla is broadly funnel-shaped. Its size is about 3.8 - 6.3 cm and divides into 4 pieces. The flower has 10 stamens with the style and is usually covered with long soft hairs towards base. Peduncle is covered with brown hair.
Fruit Description
The fruit is of a capsule type and is about 0.08 - 0.1 cm in size. Its shape is egg-like and has long hair. The fruits ripen in September.
Colour Description
Its foliage changes colour from deep green to orange-red in autumn.
Texture Description
The bark peels off in a fish-scale shape.
Notable Specimens
Commerce gardens in England and groups of plants along the Mountain.
Ethnobotanical Uses (Disclaimer)
This plant is poisonous, therefore, it is not edible. Despite that, it has been used in east Asia for medication purposes. The bark of this plant is known to prevent and treat neurodegenerative diseases such as AD and Parkinson’s disease.
Acetylcholineterase inhibitory and antioxidant properties of Rhododendron yedoense var. Poukhanense bark. (2010, November 25). Retrieved October 27, 2015, from et al.pdf Rhododendron yedoense var. poukhanense - Plant Finder. (n.d.). Retrieved October 27, 2015, from