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Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden

2525 South 336th Street, Federal Way, WA 98063
253-838-4646
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Ranked #2 of 12 Attractions in Federal Way
Type: Gardens
Owner description: Twenty-two acres of year-round botanical splendor make up the Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden. It is home to one of the largest collections of... more » Owner description: Twenty-two acres of year-round botanical splendor make up the Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden. It is home to one of the largest collections of species rhododendrons and azaleas in the world. The RSBG continues to support the conservation, preservation, distribution and display of the rhododendron species. Some rhododendrons in the collection no longer exist in their wild habitat.Wild rhododendrons have a great diversity of size and shape with flowers that range in color from white to soft pink, clear yellow, brilliant red and into deep purple. Rhododendrons can range in size from ground hugging alpines to 100 foot trees. The RSBG collection consists of species from North America, Europe, Asia and Africa.A visit to the garden will increase your knowledge of these extraordinary plants that are growing among a forest of conifers and deciduous trees. Exploring the Rutherford Conservatory will provide you with a showcase of tropical rhododendrons as well as many other tropical plants. Hundreds of these beautiful tropical plants are set along a stream with a waterfall and towering boulders. There are over 10,000 rhododendrons in this woodland garden. A gazebo in the center of the garden gives an expansive overview of the landscape. Travel the garden paths to the Fern Stumpery, Alpine and Pond Gardens and the breathtaking Meconopsis Meadow (Himalayan Blue Poppy.) After enjoying this show come and browse the gift show and Plant Sale Pavilion. « less
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21 reviews from our community

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  • English first
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English first
Athens
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
16 attraction reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2014 NEW

We visited in late Summer so only saw a few of the many Rhododendrons in bloom. Even then it was worth a walk through the trails with the huge douglas fir and many other plants and exhibits. Very peaceful except for the Interstate sound which is only 3 or 4 hundreds feet away. There is also a greenhouse which displays... More

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Sky Valley, California
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2014

We arrived too late in the afternoon to visit. It cost money to get in, and gal did not want to wave fee for late visit, wouldn't let us in..too bad too sad..it looked very beautiful and I would have liked to see more

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RSBG3, Manager at Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden, responded to this review

Our hours are 10am to 4pm, Tuesday through Sunday. If visitors arrive too near to closing time we do not offer a discounted admission. Our gates lock at 4pm and all visitors need to have exited the 22 acre Garden by that time. We are sorry for the inconvenience and disappointment that this may bring. More

Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2014

stopped here on our way south from Seattle. What a beautiful garden. Well laid out with an amazing variety of rhodies. Easy to tour and nicely done Info on each species. Worth a visit while in Seattle

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Merced, California
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
26 attraction reviews
76 helpful votes 76 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 16, 2014

This was a 2 hour stop for me on my way from WA to California. This garden is right off I-5, very convenient, and if the traffic noise wasn't so near this would be paradise. My visit occurred in mid April, and most Rhodies were in bloom, a spectacular sight. There are also tall pines, other blooming trees and flowers,... More

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1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2014

We didn't realize how large the garden was, how much there was to see. We were there in early April, and most of the rhododendrons were in bloom. It was well worth the entry fee. The Bonsai collection was an added bonus.

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Victoria, Canada
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
8 attraction reviews
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2013

Sadly, mid-May was disappointing because almost all the rhodos had finished blooming. I'm guessing March to mid-April was probably better. The good news - the adjacent Bonsai display was a surprise and delight.....and I think it was free.

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RSBG3, Manager at Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden, responded to this review

If a visitor wants to see the "peak bloom," then mid-March through April is an excellent time to visit. However, there is always something in bloom throughout the year. Many visitors spend well over an hour to just walk along all of the trails within our Garden and discover all of the beautiful display areas including the Victorian Stumpery, pond... More

Cambridge, Maryland
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
13 attraction reviews
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2013

This is joined with the Bonsai collection. I don't know why it is named with two different locations.

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RSBG3, Manager at Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden, responded to this review

The Rhododendron Species Botanical Garden (RSBG) is a totally separate organization than Weyerhaeuser's Pacific Rim Bonsai Collection. The RSBG is a 501c3 non-profit organization that receives NO funding from Weyerhaeuser. That is why we are listed as two separate gardens. However, we do both utilize Weyerhaeuser's parking lot and we have a joint entrance into our gardens. We hope that... More

Auburn, Washington
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
4 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2013

This garden has matured beautifully. If you haven't been in a while, you will be amazed. Of course, May is the peak month for rhodies in bloom, but there is at least one blooming every month. There are so many other interesting plants to see as well, such as a magnificent stand of the notoriously hard to grow Himalayan Blue... More

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Overland Park, Kansas
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

Don't miss the Conservatory and Gift Shop with many unusual items. Bonsai collection adjoining was a favorite visit as well. Sorry not to be able to walk the entire garden as I am sure we missed seeing some of the unusual "Rhodys."

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Vancouver
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

A beautiful garden – well groomed pathways, pleasant staff, and amazing plants. Everything from tiny primulas too tall, floriferous rhododendrons. We spent two days wandering the gardens, taking photos and just drinking in the beauty. Not to be missed is the Rutherford Conservatory.

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