Rhododendron cumberlandense

Species:Rhododendron cumberlandense E.L.Braun
Common Name:Cumberland Azalea; Baker's Flame Azalea
Associated Ecological Communities:**
Growth Habit:Shrub
USDA Symbol:**
Plant Notes:Cumberland Azalea is a native deciduous shrub in the Azalea family (Ericaceae). It is native to northeastern Alabama. Cumberland Azalea occurs in dry, rocky woods on the tops and slopes of mountains and sometimes on the higher slopes along creeks. It is a deciduous shrub 6-10 feet in height. Plants are often colonial, forming large stands. The bark is smooth and brownish-gray. Young twigs are pubescent with non-glandular hairs. Leaves are alternate, petiolate, ovate to obovate in outline, with ciliate margins. The leaves are pubescent with non-glandular hairs and are often glaucous on the lower surface. Flowers are produced in terminal inflorescences of 3-7 flowers on short pedicels. Flowers open after leaves have expanded. The flowers are weakly bilaterally symmetrical, funnel-form, with 5 spreading lobes. The flowers are pubescent with unicellular hairs and scattered stalked glandular hairs on the outer surface. Flower color ranges from deep red to orange, often with an indistinct blotch on the upper lobe. Flowers are not fragrant. The stamens and stigma are long exserted. The fruit is a capsule. Cumberland Azalea is listed as a S2 species in Alabama, and globally as a G4 species. Cumberland Azalea is a popular ornamental species and is available from many nurseries. It prefers a location receiving some sun with a moist, organic rich soil. Plants can also be grown from seed or by separating clones. Several selections have been developed by the nursery trade along with numerous hybrids. Cumberland Azalea is similar to and often confused with the Flame Azalea (Rhododendron calendulaceum (Michaux) Torrey). It differs from that species by its smaller size, its later flowering time, flowering after the leaves have expanded, eglandular pedicel and sepal margins, and often glaucous leaves.—A. Diamond
Taxonomic Notes:**
Status:Native, S2 (State Rank), G4 (Global Rank)
Specimen: View specimen details in the Alabama Herbarium Consortium Specimen Database

** Not applicable or data not available.


FamilyERICACEAE - Heath family
Genus Rhododendron
Species Rhododendron cumberlandense E.L.Braun - Cumberland Azalea; Baker's Flame Azalea


Citation **
Basionym: **
Type: **

** Not applicable or data not available.


SynonymFull CitationBasionymType
Rhododendron bakeri    

Specimens and Distribution

This species has been reported in the following counties by the herbaria listed. An overview of the individual specimens are provided in the table that follows. Click on the accession number to view details; click on column headers to sort; choose a county or herbaria to filter the specimen data.

Counties included on distribution map: Cleburne, Jackson, Randolph

Counties represented by specimen data listed below:

Herbaria represented by specimen data listed below: ALNHS, AUA, UWAL

Range of years during which specimens were collected: -

Barcode / Accession No. County Coll. Date Collector &
Collection No.
Herbarium &
Herbarium Name Used
ALNHS00002154 Cleburne 12 Jun 2013 Barger, T. Wayne
Rhododendron cumberlandense E.L. Braun
AUA_ACC_35258 Randolph 19 May 1979 Dean, Caroline R.
S. N.
Rhododendron Cumberlandense E. L. Braun
UWAL0034168 Cleburne 24 May 2015 Spaulding, Daniel D.
Rhododendron cumberlandense E.L. Braun
AUA_ACC_12607 Cleburne 15 May 1966 Knowles, Ronald
Rhododendron Cumberlandense E. L. Braun
AUA_ACC_34504 Cleburne 9 May 1970 Evans, R.W.
Rhododendron Cumberlandense E. L. Braun
AUA_ACC_20986 Cleburne 9 May 1970 Evans, R.W.
Rhododendron Cumberlandense E. L. Braun
AUA_ACC_46872 Jackson 2 Jul 1983 Dodd, J.K.
Rhododendron Cumberlandense E. L. Braun
ALNHS00003157 Cleburne 7 May 2015 Barger, T. Wayne
Rhododendron cumberlandense E.L. Braun
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