your longest blooming camellia

lisa2(coastal CA)November 15, 2013

Camellia newbie in the San Francisco Bay area here. I'm planning on planting my first ever camellias. I can only have four of them so I have to choose well. Upright and fast growing are qualities I'm looking for, but mostly I want to plant camellias that will bloom for the longest amount of time.

Setsugekka, Prof. Sargent, Fairy Blush, seem promising... So what are your favorite, long blooming camellias?

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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

Most of my camellias bloom for about a month but others in different locales have mentioned their bloomage lasts longer. Of course, some times that happens when temperatures fluctuate too much, causing the plants to stop blooming for a month or so. I have some japonicas that normally bloom in December-Jan and on one year, they started as usual then stopped and started blooming back again in March!

Some names that others have recommended are Spring Promise, Daikagura, Shishi Gashira and Kanjiro. My Shish Gashira did not bloom long though.

I was thinking that you could send a GardenWeb Mail to longriver for suggestions in your neck of the woods. He lives in the SF Bay Area too and likes to hybridize.


    Bookmark   November 15, 2013 at 11:59PM
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If you're looking for prolonged bloom, you'll probably do better with a japonica (such as 'Prof Sargent') rather than a sasanqua (such as 'Fairy Blush' & 'Setsugekka'). If blooming season isn't your only criterion, though, sasanquas are wonderful garden plants.

'Elegans' is known as a long bloomer, & many of its sports (such as 'C M Wilson' & 'Grand Slam') also are supposed to have a long blooming season. As Luis said, 'Spring's Promise' has been mentioned as a marathon bloomer, & 'Daikagura' is a tried & true garden classic that also blooms early in the season. 'Joshua E Youtz' was originally called 'White Daikagura' & is also early, beautiful & blooms for months.

'Prof Sargent' has a reputation as a truly outstanding garden plant- I just planted one this fall, & he's establishing himself nicely, & getting ready to bloom. An article at SFGate mentions that the Prof blooms from Fall to Spring there.

'Nuccio's Bella Rossa' is also supposed to bloom for an unusually long time, & has a gorgeous flower, IMO; I'm a little bit in love with 'NBR Variegated'. Nuccio's isn't terribly close to SF, but if I lived anywhere on the West Coast, I'd consider a visit during blooming season just for the experience itself. Those folks know a few things about camellias, so even if you can't go, you may want to contact them for recommendations for your area.

I know SF has a public Japanese tea garden, but don't know much about their camellias- it might be worth a visit?

Good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: ACS Camellia Encyclopedia

    Bookmark   November 17, 2013 at 3:22AM
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lisa2(coastal CA)

Thank you!

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 12:04PM
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Dave in NoVA • 7a • Northern VA

Your location makes all the difference! Hopefully some from Bay area will chime in.

Sounds like you could go two routes.

1) Get varieties that bloom different times. For example, an early Fall bloomer, a Winter bloomer and a Mid- to late-spring bloomer.

2) Get varieties that each bloom over a long period. For example, in my region Spring's Promise will bloom from November thru into March. Not a huge show of blooms, but a nice handful with warm periods.

But my area gets very cold in winter and so performance would be very different than for you.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2013 at 10:08AM
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I am back after many years of absence. The new hybrids of C. azalea, about 30 cultivars, developed in China would bloom in hot weather about year round. C. azalea in my passive green house bloomed last month from previous year's flower buds.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2014 at 2:21AM
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Bella Rossa blooms a long time with many flowers. The one I have started blooming over a week ago and will continue through to April.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2014 at 11:09PM
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oktobersky- that really IS a long blooming period. Thanks for the first-hand info.

One of these days, I'm going to track down a 'Bella Rossa Variegated'. It has my number and it's calling me.


    Bookmark   November 20, 2014 at 9:03PM
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