Taxonomy: Kingdom - Plantae (plants). Subkingdom - Tracheobionta (vascular plants). Superdivision - Spermatophyta (seed plants). Division - Magnoliophyta (flowering plants). Class - Magnoliopsida (dicotyledons). Subclass - Dilleniidae. Order - Ericales. Family - Ericaceae (heath). Genus - Rhododendron L. Species - Rhododendron occidentale (Torr. & A. Gray) A. Gray
Ecology: Western azalea usually grows in wetland or riparian habitats but not in areas where its roots would be submerged in water. It is tolerant of serpentine soils and is often a component of the unique plant communities found growing in this soil type in southwest Oregon. Western azalea is widely cultivated and is one of the most attractive and aromatic of all of the azaleas.