camellia varieties & blooming times

Discussion in 'Outdoor Gardening in the Pacific Northwest' started by wf1992, Mar 25, 2011.

  1. wf1992

    wf1992 Member

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    I'm looking for a new camellia. I already have one that blooms April-ish, and that's what I went out looking for.

    So I go to the nearest nursery, and look at their rather limited selection. All the tags say either fall (Oct-Dec) or winter (Dec-Feb/Mar) blooming. When I asked, I was told that the ones they had in bloom now (which were tagged winter-blooming)were what I wanted, and they were just blooming early due to being forced a bit by the growers. Ummm, really??

    After some more reading, I suspect that the spring blooming camellia I currently own (came with the house, no idea what it is) must be c. reticulata or a related hybrid? Are these less hardy?

    Anybody on the side of the nursery employee who implied the tags were meaningless and a camellia already blooming in the store will bloom significantly later in my garden?

    Anybody recommend the winter-blooming types? I'd been assuming the later it bloomed, the better my chances of avoiding weather damage.

    Any suggestions on local nurseries with better selection of camellias? Maybe it's still just too early in the season! :)

    Thanks!
     
  2. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    C. reticulata unlikely in Delta, it's essentially a California item. The main ones in bloom now in the local landscape are C. japonica and C. x williamsii. My C. x williamsii 'Donation' is still in the process of opening up. C. japonica cultivars can be seen flowering into May in this region.
     
  3. rhodogal

    rhodogal Active Member

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    Hi, I'm on VI island so don't know about which are your best nursery choices, but I would recommend if you can find 'Brigadoon', buy it. It's a williamsii camellia, one of the hardiest. It is similar to 'Donation' but I think the blooms are better, stronger. I have two, mature trees, both over 20ft, very upright, heavy bloomers every year, early April, blooms for most of the month. Another bonus to this variety it has very unique bark, light grey/silver markings on mature limbs.
    Another of my favorites, 'Jury's Yellow', a very pale yellow japonica varitey, might be easier to find than a 'Brigadoon'.
     
  4. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    'Jury's Yellow' belongs to Camellia x williamsii.
     
  5. rhodogal

    rhodogal Active Member

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  6. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Erroneous naming and other misinformation is frequent in commercial literature.
     
  7. wf1992

    wf1992 Member

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    Thanks for the input. There's such a range of choices, at least I guess I'll hold off until I find something I love. Hard for me, cause once I get an idea what I want, I want it yesterday! :)

    Does anyone have a winter-blooming camellia? Curious if weather damage is more of an issue than with spring-bloomers. I have an early rhodo that, more years than not, gets it's buds wiped out by late frost, so wondered if early camellias face the same kind of problem.
     
  8. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Yes, they do. However, if you would like a single red Camellia x vernalis 'Yuletide' seems to do pretty well.
     
  9. mastone

    mastone Member

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    Jury's Yellow' belongs to Camellia x williamsii.[/QUOTE]

    Where would I find a Donation Camellia in or around Vancouver?
    Thanks.
     

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