Now the whole of the north face of Torc and the lower half of Glena/Shehy mountains a regally rich purple sheen. The wild purple rhododendron blossom is at its peak.
Luxuriate in the profusion of huge flowers along the dirt road, parallel and just above the N71?/Kenmare Road between Torc Waterfall and the back entrance to Dinis.
Continue from the Kenmare Road along the shore of the Muckross Lake to Dinis. Take a break at the tea rooms and marvel at the different coloured rhododendrons.
Now there is water on both sides of the road. To begin the back channel that runs from the Upper to the Lower Lake and then Lower Lake/Lough Leane on the left and Middle/Muckross/Torc – the lake of three names – on the right.
Luxuriate in the abundance of blossom in Muckross Gardens. Red, pink and white cultivated rhododendron. Red, orange and dark blue azaleas.
The rhododendron flower can be as big as a football. No wonder the Victorians brought it from Himalayan and southern European countries.
The wild, purple rhododendron ponticum is now everywhere in Killarney. Here in the important Killarney oakwoods along the eastern shore of the Upper Lake.
The rhododendron thrives in the acid soil and mild, moist climate of Killarney. With up to seven thousand seeds in each blossom little wonder that it is spreading like wildfire. Underneath nothing grows. The oakwoods and ground cover plants will be wiped out unless they are brought under control.
The rhododendron is a beautiful scourge. Over these weeks look and photograph and enjoy this most colourful tree shrub.