Rhododendron Tour

Rhododendron Tour

We who garden all have a mountain of memories of Captain Richard (Dick) Steele. One of his most outstanding attributes was the impact he had on everyone he met.

Captain Steele believed that beautiful plants and gardens made people more virtuous and the world a more peaceful place. To many, he was “Captain Rhododendron”, a tounge-in-cheek homage to a visionary who opened up new possibilities for ornamental horticulture in Atlantic Canada and beyond.

He spent research time in Newfoundland and Labrador with huge patience, looking for our Alpine jewels, taking cuttings and gathering seed. In later years, he continued his work and researching leaning first on one cane, then two.

Captain Richard Steele was a founding member of the Atlantic Chapter of the Rhododendron Society of Canada and supported the creation of the Atlantic Rhododendron & Horticultural Society.

Dick set up Bayport Plant Farm in 1973 where he focused on crossbreeding rhododendron species and hybrids to produce tough plants for the Atlantic climate. Dick was awarded the gold medal of the American Rhododendron Society and in 2004, he became a member of the Order of Canada.

Captain RIchard (Dick) Steele  passed away quietly on March 14, 2010.

Many of Captain Steele’s rhododendrons are admired in both public and private gardens throughout the Atlantic provinces and beyond. They are enjoyed by thousands of visitors throughout the year through and there is an extra surge of visitors when the rhododendrons are in bloom.

On June 7th, a group of Chester Garden Club members and friends gathered and Sandy’s for coffee and then met guides, Debbie and Kathleen Hall for the pre-arranged tour of the private Halifax, Hall’s Road Dick Steele Rhododendron Gardens.

Both from the comments of those who attended this was a truly delightful tour.

0 Replies to “Rhododendron Tour”

  1. Tour looked great and wish I could hace joined you. Dick and Nancy Steel were great friends. Larry went to Korea with Dick and I even lived with Nancy and the children for severy months of that year. And when we came to this house, I asked Dick for the biggest rodos he could get me and you should see them today!!! Also all the following ones came from him. Nan was our younger daughter’s Godmother and her gift to Cathy was a Maude Lewis painting — one chosen to tour the country and be in the book. I remember well as Dick starting his wonderful garden on Hall’s drive. Glad so many were able to enjoy. Glad it was a nice day and not as hot as today. Cheers, Jane W

    Sent from my iPad

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.