Camellia Japonica:

Flowering from January to April, this species with glossy 4-inch leaves reaches a height and spread of 6 feet in 10 years with an ultimate height and spread of 10 feet or more.


Zones 8 to 9.

Camellia Sasanqua:

This species is hardier and more open in growth habit with smaller 2-inch leaves. Lightly fragrant flowers appear from September to December, just before C. japonica, to extend the Camellia season.


Zones 7 to 9.


Set out plants in the spring or fall in a moisture retentive, acid soil (4.0-6.0 pH) enriched with organic matter. Do not plant deeply; the soil level from the pot should be even with the surrounding soil. Plants grow best in shade but will tolerate full sun if well watered through the summer and during dry spells. In northern areas, it is beneficial to provide extra winter protection by planting near a wall. A western exposure will prevent damage to flowers caused by morning sun hitting frozen flowers.


To maintain a cool, moist root zone, add 2 to 4 inches of a mulch such as pine needles, shredded leaves, or ground bark. Fertilize each spring with an acid fertilizer following label directions. No regular pruning is required. Remove only weak or old wood and dead flower heads after flowering. In northern areas, containerized plants can be moved into a cool greenhouse for winter protection. Keep potted plants moist but not soggy to prevent flower bud drop.