We call him Max - The Rhod Warrior.
And he has a story ...
Max was gifted to us by my parents a year or two after we moved here. He was small but unique - not a 'traditional' bushy-type Rhododendron. We planted him in what we thought at the time was a protected yet visible corner of our property; he was nestled in the center of a ring of pine trees near the intersection of our street and the main road. We named him Max - in honor of Mad Max, The Road Warrior, who was also a unique loner - and he was very happy, growing and blooming each Spring. Until 2006.
The year of 2006 is when our town decided to conduct massive road construction along the outer edge of our property line where the main road runs and intersects our street. This was not a fun time. The road crew was noisy and cutting down these majestic pine trees along the right-of-way but there was nothing we could do about it so we practiced acceptance.
Until they hurt Max.
Since I work at home (homemaker, animal-mom, holistic care practitioner, writer, etc!), I kept an eye on the crew. I knew that they were working very near Max but figured he would be fine, secure in his circle of sentinels. So I went away for a few days to a workshop on flower essences, while Ron stayed home with the fur-kids. I was shocked to get a phone call from Ron that Max had been traumatized!
We have no idea why the crew didn't approach us - as it was blatantly obvious from the mulching around Max that he was a cultivated, cared-for plant - but apparently they were in a hurry and not only cut down and bull-dozed several of the magnificent pines on the corner but also ripped Max from the earth and tossed him callously aside into the woods!
Thankfully, Ron saw it all happen and rushed out to rescue Max! Poor Max had several primary limbs broken, plus other minor injuries, not to mention his energetic trauma. But Ron quickly and gently re-planted him in another spot -- still near our street but on our property that was not within the right-of-way -- gave Max a drink and asked me what else I thought he should do. So I had Ron make up a spray bottle to include some Emergency Essence and spritz Max several times a day. Max survived.
Today, three years later, Max continues to grow and bloom, unique and determined. He's a very handsome friend who is settled and content in his new location, providing early blossoms for the bees (there was one gathering nectar early this morning!), and he's a testimony to recovery from trauma.
We're a little attached to our friend Max.
Our Rhod/Road Warrior.