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Fresh Friday: Camellias

Camellia bicolor

Camellias have been a part of the southern landscape for almost 200 years. They are native to the Orient and were introduced into the U.S. near Charleston, South Carolina in 1786. The common name camellia refers to varieties and hybrids of Camellia japonica and to the less known varieties of C. sasanqua and C. reticulate.

Camellias can serve several functions in the landscape including foundation plantings, screens, accent plants, background groupings and hedges. Maximum benefit can be achieved by mass plantings or groupings.

Camellias flower in the fall and winter when their display of colorful blooms is most appreciated. During the remainder of the year their evergreen foliage, interesting shapes and textures, and relatively slow growth make camellias excellent landscape plants.

3 Responses

  1. Please tell me what red/white variety is shown in the picture accompanying the paragraph about camellias. I would like to buy it.

    • Hi Leslie! This photo was taken in the back yard of a friend’s house; apparently, the camellia shrubs existed when our friend purchased the home, so he’s not sure what variety it is. The American Camellia Society has a wonderful website (http://www.americancamellias.org/), with a section titled “Gardens and Nurseries.” There you can type in your zip code, and a listing of nurseries near you will come up. The site also has hundreds (if not thousands) of gorgeous photos of camellia varieties. We did find a few that look similar to the camellia in our Fresh Friday post – ‘Cecil Beared Variegated’, ‘Dixie Knight Supreme’, and ‘Fircone Variegated’.

  2. My guess would be Camellia japonica ‘Governor Mouton’.

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