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FRIDAY, APRIL 30, 2010

2010 Rhododendron Festivals in the Lower Mainland

Rhododendrons are found throughout British Columbia - these shade loving plants have beautiful large blooms in a variety of colours which peak in the month of May (but can be seen from March to August). There are many festivals celebrating these shrubs (also considered trees!) as well as certain locations in the province which offer spectacular groupings of these gorgeous flowers! Celebrate May by seeing some of British Columbia's beautiful Rhododendrons!

Rhododendrons are found throughout British Columbia in a wide range of colours as the shady forests offer ideal growing conditions.British Columbia is known for its beautiful gardens and flowers, such as the stunning Rhododendron! There are many events and locations to visit to see these pretty blooms!

Rhododendrons in the  forest.FESTIVALS:
> BURNABY RHODODENDRON FESTIVAL | May 2nd | 9:30am - 4:00pm | Shabolt Centre for the Arts (map) | Free | Enjoy displays of Rhododendron, guided walks, speakers, and vote for the spring bouquet competition! | Website
> RHODODENDRON DAYS | April 29th - May 9th | 10:00am - 5:00pm | Milner Gardens, Qualicum Beach (map) | Adult: $10; Student: $6 | The Rhododendrons at Milner Gardens are its most significant collections. Enjoy a walk through the woodland Garden or join an afternoon guided tour on the weekends. | Website
> MOUNT ARROWSMITH RHODODENDRON SOCIETY GARDEN TOUR | May 8th - 9th | 10:00am - 4:00pm | Parksville to San Pareil, Vancouver Island | $15 | Experience the 19th annual Garden Tour featuring a dozen gardens. | Website
> GEORGE FRASER DAY & HERITAGE FAIR | May 22nd | 10:30am - 4:00pm | Ucluelet Community Centre (map) | Fair: $2; Bus Tour: $10 | Explore Ucluelet's beautiful gardens and celebrate one of its earliest pioneers and world-renowned rhododendron enthusiasts with tours, a fair, exhibits and see the Rhododendron 'Fraseri' | Website

Rhododendron bud at the Ted and
Mary Greig Rhododendron Garden in Stanley Park.Rhododendrons come in a wide range of colours from purples to
oranges to yellow to whites to reds and pinks!PLACES:
> TED AND MARY GREIG RHODODENDRON GARDEN | South-west Stanley Park (map) | In the late 1960s, renowned hybridizers Ted and Mary Greig donated their rhododendron collection (4,500 plants!) to Vancouver. They peak in May but flower from March to August! | Website
> VANDUSEN GARDENS | 5251 Oak Street, Vancouver (map) | Explore the Rhododendron Walk in stunning VanDusen Gardens. Its rhododendron blooms peak in May. | Website
> UBC BOTANICAL GARDENS AND NITOBE GARDENS | Southern Point Grey UBC Campus (map) | Cost: $4 - $24 |The UBC Botanical Gardens provide an opportunity to see its impressive collection of Rhododendrons from March to August in the David C. Lam Asian Garden and Rhododendrons can also be seen at the nearby Nitobe Gardens.
> RHODODENDRON FLATS | E.C. Manning Provincial Park (map) | The Rhododendron Flats are a twenty minute hike taking visitors to a stand of Red Rhododendrons, a rare and protected indigenous species that blooms early to mid-June. | Website
> RHODODENDRON LAKE | Parksville, Vancouver Island (map) | The shores of this beautiful lake are lined with bright pink Pacific Rhododendrons - survivors of the last ice age! These beautiful flowers peak from May to June.

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