Evergreen, moderately sized with beautiful flowers, certain cultivars even bloom in winter, making camelia a real crowd pleaser. It should only be planted by a gardener that's ready for some hefty upkeep.
Common name : Camelia
Scientific name : Camellia spp.
Family : Theaceae
Category : Shrubs
Type of plant : Perennial
Camelia has her strengths, with superb flowers, handsome evergreen foliage, and an early bloomer.
But the drawbacks are sizeable: it can't grow in just any soil, and especially not in gardens with too much alkaline. It needs soil that's slightly acidic -ph 6-, rich, and cool, sheltered from violent light and frost.
If you're in a region with acidic soil and an ocean climate, camelia is the plant for you!
Otherwise, it can grow in a pot, but you'll have to give it fresh dirt and peat, which has a certain environmental impact. Planting in open soil in a bed is possible, but has the same drawbacks.
As an alternative, for ordinary or chalky soil, take a look at Viburnum.
Sowing & planting
100 - 500
4 - 6
Identify my camelia
Camellias are evergreen shrubs or small trees, with alternate, simple leaves, lanceolate to elliptical, slightly toothed, lustrous.
The flowers are of several types, some single with 5-8 petals, semi-double, some classic double, irregular double, some with anemone flower, or some with peony flower.
Beware, the camellia is demanding, and will require a lot of attention - in return, it is a superb shrub for who knows how to take care of it!
Plant my camelia
Plant your camellia away from the strong sun, and from cold winds. The camellia is a plant of acid soil, but it will wither in a pure heathsoil, that is too poor for him. It is therefore necessary to think of enriching the soil with potting soil, or somewell decomposed compost.
If you want to plant a camellia in open soil, in neutral soil or limestone soil, you must create a wide pocket of garden felt corresponding to 2/3 of the volume of the foliage of the adult plant - otherwise it will be limited in size.
At the bottom of this pocket, deposit a layer of clay balls, then add a mixture of equal parts of heather, soil and garden soil.
Basin the rootball before planting, plant without burying the base of the trunk, form a hollow and water copiously.
In pots, choose dwarf species, and provide each plant with a pot of at least 40 cm in diameter, with clay balls at the bottom, and a mix of loam, potting soil and heather. Soak the pot for 20 minutes.
Mulch my camelia
Mulch your camellias in November and April with bark and pine spines, and before winter, add a thick layer of leaves that will protect the superficial roots from the frost.
Water my camelia
Water by important contributions, often during spring and summer the first year. The second water a little less, and especially during the hot weather: outside of these special conditions, your camellia planted in the ground will fetch for themselves.
If your camellia is in pot, you will have to help it from time to time. Rather than watering the pot for long minutes, immerse it completely in a bucket while you water the rest of your plants! Small tip: you can provide small hollows at the base of shrubs, then spread mulch on 10 cm thick.
In the spring, water in the morning and in summer, in the evening, when the sun is down. A small difficulty with watering camellias: if your tap water is too calcareous, your plant will appreciate moderately! A simple solution is to collect rainwater ...
Fertilize my camelia
Your camelia will hold better if you watch over it — and provide supplies — just before winter and during spring.
In winter, provide a green fertilizer on the top of the soil every year.
In spring, you can provide heather compost if you notice a yellowing of the leaves' veins. You can also provide simple supplies of lye from time to time by spreading wood ash.
Another simple and natural possibility: dried banana! Cut the banana peel into small pieces and bury them at the base of the plants: it will provide phosphorus and potassium.
In heavy and claylike soil, the supply of organic material doesn't acidify the soil. You must use a limited and regular blending of sulfur, following the directions exactly so as not to kill the soil life.
Repot my camelia
Your potted camellias will appreciate an input of new soil in automn: renew the first 5 cm of substrate with potting soil and heather earth.
Prune my camelia
Vigilant deadheading will prolong the blooming period !
Protect my camelia
Most species are very sensitive to frost, except for some. Protect your plant, either by mulching it abundantly and covering it with burlap, or, if it is in a pot, by returning it under shelter for the frost period.