Friday, December 10, 2010

Crop Review 2010 – Camellias

In October of 2009, Mrs. Tingley (Camellia Japonica) Camellias were purchased from Nuccio’s in Altadena, California.  After over a year of growth in the garden, the plants are finally popping!  Even though these shrubs were planted in 2009, they’re included in the 2010 review to mark the 1st of many Decembers to be full of camellia blossoms.



  • ease to grow - Fairly easy.  Each plant is in rich, well drained, acidic soil.  These plants are on the north side of a very tall wall.  When summer sun threatens to burn the vegetation, a temporary shade is erected for the summer. There is hardly any maintenance with this plant.  Removing the occasional weed and pruning out any unwanted stems is about all the maintenance needed.  Fertilizing is recommended April, June, August, and October…just don’t over feed.  Don’t over water either.
  • pest & disease resistance – So far, I haven’t noticed any pests or diseases at all.  The shrubs were dormant sprayed during the winter.  Having a hardy plant is a huge bonus. 
  • appearance  - Are you kidding me?!  Just look at that soft pink color.  The bushes are still a bit immature to make a striking appearance.  I was considering pruning these as espalier; but ended up keeping with the natural growth.
  • production – Each bush produced only leaves during it’s 1st year in the garden.  During the 2nd year, blossoms are popping!  Blooms are expected to continue into April. If you need immediate gratification, you may want to consider something else; but to have beautiful blossoms all winter long seems like it’s worth it.
  • scent - I haven’t noticed any scent with this variety.


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My rating for the Mrs. Tingley is 4 out of 5 flowers because there is no scent.  Being unscented may be a bonus to you so add another flower if you like.


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