Best Time To Prune & How?

calpat(zone9ab No.Ca.)February 15, 2005

My Camellias are blooming beautifully right now & with long stems on flowers. The bushes are getting out of control as far as size goes, but I'm getting mixed signals about when to prune them and how. The blooming will be over about the end of Feb./March. Any suggestions as to where or who has the most legitimate instructions?

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forrestal(Gulf Coast z8b)

Camellias respond well to pruning, and now is getting to be the best time, as they finish blooming and prior to the flush of spring growth. You can find some good general guidelines on the link below. Click on "Camellia Q&A" and then "Growing Camellias." You will see a listing on the subject of pruning.

Here is a link that might be useful: American Camellia Society

    Bookmark   February 18, 2005 at 12:11AM
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calpat(zone9ab No.Ca.)

Thanks so much for the links, they were all informative &helpful. CP

    Bookmark   February 18, 2005 at 2:17PM
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I have a large Camellia plant about seven or eight feet tall. I have delayed pruning too long and wish to learn how best to prune this plant. It is a healthy plant and has just completed flowering for this season. Please advise.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 4:50PM
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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

Prune to remove small/weak/dead branches or branches that cross. Prune to let some sunlight and air into the center of the bush. Prune to improve the look of the shrub in the garden, restore vigor or to create an espalier camellia.

Timing should be based on how much you are going to prune. If you are going to heavily prune (1/3 or 1/2), it is best to prune when the plant is dormant in winter (say, in February). Otherwise prune after blooming. The plant should recover quickly and begin vigorouos grwoth.

Future bloomage may or may not be affected by pruning. The one who makes the decision cannot speak so assume that the more you prune, the more this could reduce bloomage or stop it altogether for one growing season.

Prune limbs flush to the feeder branches without leaving lump where disease and insects can enter the plant. Use sharp clean pruners for the task.

If you want your camellia to grow larger than it currently is then just prune it back 1" inch or less. To stay a certain size, cut it back to a few inches l-e-s-s than the size you want.

To make the shrub grow fuller, pinch the ends when new growth starts leafing out.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2011 at 8:54PM
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davidrt28 (zone 7)
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