One of a grex of seedlings produced by the late Halfdan Lem of Seattle, Wa. in the 1970's, this is most often recognized as the one with the largest flower. The group became known as the 'Walloper' group, and has never been surpassed by any hybridizer since. The flower trusses can be as large as 18 inches tall and just about as wide. One truss was entered into our chapter's show and the leaves were over 24 inches tip to tip. If 'bigger' is better, then this cultivar is better. The DNA has been tested and it is a tetraploid, with more chromosomes than other rhododendrons. This means the flowers are larger and the foliage and stems are thicker, resulting in resistance to insects and diseases. The plant will grow to be 15 ft. tall and 20 ft wide, so you must have the room. A great choice for a screen. Others in the grex include 'Pink Walloper' and 'Red Walloper'.
Premium Variety – This variety has proven itself over time to be a higher-grade plant with better performance, a higher degree of attractiveness, and is hard to find and purchase.