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Plant type Shrubs

Best uses

Great for winter colour in large borders or woodland plantings with light shade. As this is a more compact camellia, it is great for use in containers or as a low hedge.

Physical characteristics

A spreading, evergreen shrub growing to around 1.2m tall and 1.2m wide depending on pruning.

Flowers and foliage

A delicate double-flowered camellia producing masses of small white flushed pink flowers from May to July. Leaves are ovate, leathery and mid to dark green.

Preferred site

Best planted in partial shade but will happily tolerate more sun than most. Best in moist but well-drained acidic soil.

Maintenance tips

Mulch well in spring and water thoroughly during dry periods for the first two or three years. Propagation of cultivars is always from cuttings or by grafting. Prune after flowering to keep plants compact using secateurs to thin and shorten branches, or hedge clippers to promote dense growth. Those with upright habits may be kept slender by training to a single leader and after flowering shortening and thinning lateral branches. Young plants require thorough watering during dry periods over the first two or three years. Mulching helps to conserve moisture and suppress weeds. Plants in very acidic soil will benefit from a light application (50g/m2) of dolomite lime every three years.

Pests and diseases

Check plants in spring for leaf-roller caterpillars, aphids and the nymph stage of thrips. Aphids on other plants can secrete honeydew onto leaves below which in turn grows sooty mould. This is most common when plants are grown in full shade. Camellias are also susceptible to leaf gall.

Location at Auckland Botanic Gardens

Camellia Garden