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Definition of RHODODENDRON
: any of a genus (Rhododendron) of widely cultivated shrubs and trees of the heath family with alternate leaves and showy flowers; especially: one with leathery evergreen leaves as distinguished from a deciduous azalea
New Latin, from Latin, oleander, from Greek, from rhod- + dendron tree — more at dendr-
First Known Use: 1664
Any of about 850 diverse species of woody plants that make up the genus Rhododendron in the heath family, notable for their attractive flowers and handsome foliage. They are native chiefly to the northern temperate zone, especially South Asia and Malaysia. Some are evergreens, others deciduous. Some are low-growing ground covers; others are tall trees. Flowers are usually tubular to funnel-shaped and occur in a wide range of colours: white, yellow, pink, scarlet, purple, and blue. See alsoazalea.