Growing Camellias in the Autumn

If you were to ask me what my favorite flower is, I should say: “whatever blooms”! At the moment, in my corner of the forest, it would be Camellia sasanqua. Their flowers are the jewels of the cold garden and bloom in the autumn and winter months, depending on the variety. Beautiful, shiny, evergreen is an elegant advantage in winter, which provides the garden with the necessary structure.

The color of the flowers varies from pure white to pink and red, some with an interesting variety. Although the species has a large number of varieties, most gardeners are familiar with C. sasanqua, which blooms in autumn, and C. japonica, which blooms in after winter. The combination of these two in your garden will give color for several months when few other flowers bloom.

Despite their somewhat picky reputation, camellias (zone 6b-9B) are fairly easy to cultivate once you understand a few principles. First, put the plant in the right place and plant it correctly!

The ideal growing conditions of camellias are reminiscent of those of azaleas and are therefore excellent planting partners. In particular, they require loose, well-modified, acidic soil (6.5 pH), moist, without remaining moist, and little competition with the roots of other plants. Their roots have a high oxygen requirement, so they are quite shallow. Cultivation and underplanting around the roots of camellias are not recommended.

Preferring partial shade, they can be planted under large deciduous trees that do not have an aggressive root system and pines. C. sasanqua is better able to tolerate a sunny place if it is not under the hot afternoon sun. Artificial shade can be created with lath or a shade fabric if the conditions are too intense.

Sensitive to root rot, you should make sure that the root ball is arranged so that it does not settle under the ground. Camellias are not good in heavy soils. In clay soils, I generally recommend changing the planting site as much as possible, and not just the planting hole. Just changing the hole under these conditions could lead to an accumulation of water, a sure cause of passing away. Finally, mulch well and think about it; the plant is essentially still potted until the roots loosen into the surrounding soil, so watch your moisture needs until it’s well established.

Another important factor to consider is good fertilization. Camellias are not heavy feeders and do not respond well to excessive stimulation. Interestingly, their flowering period is also their dormant period, and they should not be fertilized. Cottonseed meal and fish emulsion are a good natural choices. Two or three feedings between April 1 and September 1 will be enough.

Pruning is beneficial to control the pruning, maintain the shape and create strong branches to support the weight of the flowers. As with most plants, it is always better to prune after the flowering period. Camellias also benefit from deburring. This is the removal of the flower buds next to the main terminal bud, resulting in a larger and more robust flower, therefore the reason for a reasonable pruning to support the larger flower.

Given the beauty and longevity of these plants throughout the year, I would like to give you a boost so that you can try a few of them in your garden. In these dreary autumn and winter days, I think that you will be glad to have done it!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Related Posts