Biodiversity Science ›› 2013, Vol. 21 ›› Issue (5): 628-634.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1003.2013.07251

• Orginal Article • Previous Article     Next Article

Germplasm resource base for rhododendron horticulture: status, probl- ems and countermeasures

Hong Wu1, *(), Xuemei Yang1, Huimin Shao2, Fei Wang2   

  1. 1 Sichuan Natural Resource Academy, Chengdu 610041
    2 West China Sub-alpine Botanical Garden, Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Dujiangyan, Sichuan 611830
  • Received:2012-12-24 Accepted:2013-05-15 Online:2013-10-08
  • Wu Hong

The germplasm resource of rhododendrons is a potential factor influencing their horticultural development. We discuss the current situation and problems facing utilization and conservation of rhododendrons to provide new thoughts with regard to China’s rhododendron horticulture industry. Currently, only about 12.0-15.0 percent of global rhododendron germplasm resources, and around 8.7-12.2 percent found in China, have been utilized in rhododendron horticulture. The rhododendron species commonly used mainly belong to semi-evergreen and deciduous species, for instance, Subgenera Tsutsusi and Therorhodion. We list some of China’s primitive rhododendron species which are suitable for breeding based on our field observations, and point out some current problems in the utilization of germplasm including insufficient understanding of the value of germplasm resources, limitation of the research platform, and limited technical ability for cultivating new varieties, etc. The rationality and sustainability of germplasm resources should be fully considered and managed in the development of rhododendron horticulture. We suggest the development of a public platform for research and the establishment of 3-5 nature reserves mainly focusing on rhododendron conservation. Also, we advise strengthening of independent research and the development of capabilities and techniques for producing new varieties.

Key words: germplasm resource, resource alliance, intellectual property right, Rhododendron

Table 1

The germplasm resources of Rhododendron and their utilization status in the world"

No. in the world
No. being utilized
Utilization rate (%)
Major groups
亚属 Subgenus 8 8 100.0 映山红 Tsutsusi
羊踯躅 Therorhodion
组 Section 15 11 73.3 羊踯躅 Pentanthera
映山红 Tsutsusi
亚组 Subsection 58 16 27.6 云锦 Fortunea
长序 Pontica
有鳞大花 Maddenia
种 Species 1,000 120-150 12.0-15.0 映山红 R. simsii
羊踯躅 R. molle
云锦杜鹃 R. fortunei
皋月杜鹃 R. indicum
岸杜鹃 R. ripense
麝香草杜鹃 R. serpyllifolium
淀川杜鹃 R. tedoense
长序杜鹃 R. ponticum
R. macrophyllu

Table 2

The species and their origin area of Rhododendron"

No. of species
No. of
中国 China 576 50-70 8.7-12.2
东北亚 NE Asia 54 35-45 64.8-83.3
欧洲 Europe 9 7-8 77.8-88.9
北美洲 North America 25 18-20 72.0-80.0

Appendix I

The major Rhododendron species having been utilized in rhododendron horticulture"

中国原产 China 碎米花杜鹃 R. spiciferum
映山红 R. simsii 炮仗杜鹃 R. spinuliferum
羊踯躅 R. molle 短花杜鹃 R. brachyanthum
云锦杜鹃 R. fortunei 疏花杜鹃 R. annae ssp. laxiflorum
喇叭杜鹃 R. discolor 红马银花 R. vialiidelavay
满山红 R. mariesii 绵毛房杜鹃 R. facetum
中原杜鹃 R. nakaharae 东北亚原产 NE Asia
白毛杜鹃 R. mucronatum 皋月杜鹃 R. indicum
钟花杜鹃 R. campylocarpum 岸杜鹃 R. ripense
马缨花 R. delavayi 麝香草杜鹃 R. serpyllifolium
桃叶杜鹃 R. annae 淀川杜鹃 R. tedoense
露珠杜鹃 R. irroratum 莲花杜鹃 R. japonicum
团花杜鹃 R. anthosphaerum 糯杜鹃 R. macrosepalum
粗柄杜鹃 R. pachypodum 异蕊杜鹃 R. semibarbatum
黄杯杜鹃 R. wardii R. burmanicum
橙黄杜鹃 R. citriniflorum 欧洲原产 Europe
腺梗两色杜鹃 R. dichroanthum var. scyphocalyx 长序杜鹃 R. ponticum
蜜黄血红杜鹃 R. sanguineum var. haemalum 欧洲黄杜鹃 R. luteum
火红杜鹃 R. neriiflorum 高加索杜鹃 R. caucasicum
圆叶杜鹃 R. williamsianum 秀色杜鹃 R. ferrugineum
硫磺杜鹃 R. sulfureum R.macrophyllu
金平林生杜鹃 R. leptocladon 北美洲原产 N-America
纯黄杜鹃 R.chrysodoron 折萼杜鹃 R. austrinum
毛柄杜鹃 R. valentinianum 极大杜鹃 R. maximum
招展杜鹃 R. megeratum 大西洋杜鹃 R.atlanticum
朱砂杜鹃 R. cinnabarinum 树形杜鹃 R. arborescens
鲜黄杜鹃 R. xanthostephanum 加拿大杜鹃 R. candense
黄铃杜鹃 R. xanthocodon 酒红杜鹃 R. catawbiense
黄花杜鹃 R. lutescens 北美杜鹃 R. calendulaceum
云南杜鹃 R. yunnanense 粉红映山红 R. periclymenoides
基毛杜鹃 R. rigidum
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