What are the most beautiful Camellia Gardens you have visited?
By far, the RHS garden at Wisley, in mid-March, at the height of the camellia season. I have not been to many other British or American camellia gardens, but this was a knock-your-socks off display, underplanted with hellebores, corylopsis, other late winter bloomers. A memorable day in the garden, I could barely pull myself away.
Descanso, in La Canada/Flintridge here in SoCal.There's a whole camellia forest there.
Here is a link that might be useful: Descanso Gardens
One of the top rated Camellia Gardens in the world is Massee Lane Gardens near Ft. Valley, GA. It is also the current headquarters for the American Camellia Society.
Here is a link that might be useful: American Camellia Society
Ditto for Massee Lane Gardens in Fort Valley Georgia... it's about six miles south of Fort Valley on GA Hwy 49. Annual month-long Festival of Camellias is held each February - 10 acres of formal camellia gardens + landscaped greenhouse + oodles more camellias everywhere. They also sell camellia plants. You can email them for more info...
firstname.lastname@example.org or 478-967-2358
Jeane (recently retired from the American Camellia Society at Massee Lane)
The camellia garden at the South Carolina Botanical Garden at Clemson University is not as big as those world famous gardens mentioned in other messages; however, it is a spectacular planting.
It began as a test garden for cold hardiness of camellias in the 1950's. The camellia garden is on a rather steep hillside that slopes down to a pond. It is shaded by a large grove of slash pines. The camellia plantings are mainly _Camellia japonica_, but there are other types of camellias, too.
The peak blooming season is March, but there are flowers throughout the fall, winter, and spring, depending on the cultivar. Plants are identified as to variety, and the camellia garden is a good place to identify varieties suitable to gardening in the warmer part of Zone 1.
I posted a little pic of the front of Massee Lane Gardens on the gallery.
Norfolk Botanical Gardens in Norfolk, VA. has an excellent Camellia collection.
You forget to mention that Massee Lane Gardens is 2 miles north of the Metropolis of Marshallville, GA where there is a marvelous planting of Crape Myrtles along both sides of GA 49, just south of town.(It's been a while since I've driven down that road, Hope they are still there!)
Marshallville is indeed a "metropolis"... beautiful small gem-of-a-town with lots of historic features... Huge camellias everywhere, beautiful crape myrtles on GA Hwy 49 before you enter the city limits, and then again south of the city limits. Also has the historic home of the originator of the Elberta peach!!! Massee Lane Gardens is now bigger than ever with more camellias being planted every year.
The best and oldest camellia garden's I have visited is Middleton Place Gardens just outside of Charleston SC. This is a magnificent example of the longevity of camellias! There are varieties that are over 200 years old and over 40' tall with trunks 2-3' in diameter. A sight to behold. Go February to early MArch for the best displays!
Huntington Gardens in San Marino CA is great too!
I heard it. However I will be there next March. This is a new camellia garden in China. It is also a get away spot built by a venture developer and hobbist, Mr. Ma of Taiwan. It is called Merryland, Guilin. The area is about 20 miles from most scenic area in China. It has a huge 5 star Hotel and 18 holes golf course in the middle of 20,000 camellia trees. They have collected many camellia cultivars from US, NZ, Japan ,Australia and Veitnam. They also display a huge collection of Chinses new and ancient camellias cultivars, including many hard to find camellia species.
About 5,000 camellia trees are the large size trees by "crown"grafts. The understock is old C. oleifera which can be 50 to 100 years old.
One of the best and oldest camellia gardens in the USA is Magnolia Plantation and Gardens in Charleston,SC. Parts of the Garden are over 325 years old.
This year the Garden is expanding it's collection of Ancient and Historic varieties of camellias.
It's a beautiful garden - not to be missed.
Here is a link that might be useful: Magnolia Plantation and Gardens
This was the tops discussed about six years ago. I have to dig out the old picture to show you the newly built camellia garden Resort complex called "Merryland" near Guilin, Guanxi Province. Here is the walk way around two huge lakes, planted with all camellias along the trail and slopes. I can image now the camellia plants should be taller, over 20,000 camellia plants.
Here is a link that might be useful:
Now I give you a bigger picture to show you where is the trail around the lake and many open garden slope areas with over 20,000 camellias. I know you can not see it clearly.
It was four years ago, I went to a small mountain farm house, near Chendu, Sichuan Province. A Traditional Chinese old camellia Tree bearing red anemone flower is estimated over 1,200 years old. A few huge tree trunks are actually the secondary growth. The main trunk was fallen down to induce the secondary tree trunk growth.
"over 1.200 years old" - so it was in the 9th or even 8th century. What a miracle! And what an event to see such trees!
Thank you for sharing!
"Here is the walk way around two huge lakes, planted with all camellias along the trail and slopes. I can image now the camellia plants should be taller, over 20,000 camellia plants."
That makes me dreaming! And when is the best time to visit this 'Merryland' to can admire the flowers?
Your photos, Longriver, are always so nice. If they are pictures of camellia flowers or pictures of landscape, they always look so extraordinary! Thank you for sharing!
To see camellia flowers, at end of Feb and first week of March is the best. Yet to see the famous Guilin nearby, I am not very sure. I went there twice, in Sept. and in Early March. Both were nice, pending the moving clouds and mist.
See my picture about the mountains and river of Guilin, Guanxi Province, China.
Oh! what a beautiful picture! You are an artist, there is no doubt! Thank you very much! I'll retain Guanxi Province, yes! :)