Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon:
- Broadleaf evergreen shrub, to 3 ft (1.5 m) high in 10 years, somewhat wider, upright, open, may reach 20 ft (6 m) tall in the wild, young shoots covered with a soft white felt (tomentum). Leaves narrow, oblong or lance shaped, 10-18 cm long, 2.5-5 cm wide, tapered base, thick, leathery, dark green, underside covered with a soft felt (indumentum), at first white then pale brown. Flowers bright purplish rose, 5-7.5 cm across, broadly funnel-shaped, frilled margins, 10-12 or more in ball-like clusters.
- 5°F, mid-late; quality rating: 3/3-4/2-3. [flower / plant & foliage / performance; scale 1 (poor) - 5 (best)].
- Native to northeast Turkey.
- smirnowii: after M. Smirnow, a friend of the discoverer, Baron Ungern-Stenberg.
- Rhododendron Species Foundation and Botanical Garden, Federal Way, Washington.