Elsie Lee' was bred by Anthony M. Shammarello of South Euclid, Ohio and introduced in 1970. It is the result of a cross between Rhododendron 'Desiree' as the seed parent and Rhododendron 'Rosebud' as the pollen parent. It has semi-double, widely funnel-shaped, 2¼ - 2½ in. wide flowers that are pink with bluish or lavender overtones.
It is the national flower of Nepal, the state flower of Washington and West Virginia in the United States, the provincial flower of Jiangxi in China and the state tree of Sikkim and Uttarakhand in India.