cutting camillas for indoor arrangements

nancyfc(z6b NJ)November 23, 2013

My Ackerman camellia 'Winter's Joy' is full of blossoms and buds. I have not had success in the past in cutting the flowers for indoor arrangements. Is there anything I can do to keep the flowers in good shape indoors for Thanksgiving?

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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

I have seen pictures of arrangements in white or transparent shallow (less than 2" say?) bowls where the leaves of one or several branches are tweaked and-or cut to stabilize the branches in the arrangement and some camellia wax is used to wax some of the blooms.

If you only have bloomage to display then try putting them in one of those white/colored flower baskets. This works well when you add 2-3 leaves around a bloom. If you have a large number of branches, you could put them in a piece with styrofoam block (and maybe put a few stand alone blooms on the lower parts or maybe around the vase forming a circle, etc.

Do a find in the forum for keywords 'interior arrangements' or 'camellia wax'. There was a post from many years ago that some members posted pictures. Very nice if you are looking for ideas.

Pictures of arrangements used in camellia competitions might give you additional ideas.


    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 3:36PM
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nancyfc(z6b NJ)

I have no problem in devising an arrangement -- I just wondered if it's possible to prolong the indoor life of the blossoms. If I remember correctly, in the past for me most of the petals fell after only a day indoors.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 6:45PM
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luis_pr(7b/8a Hurst, TX)

Yes, the "camellia waxing" that I mentioned earlier allows you to extend the life of the blooms. I do not enter into camellia competitions and am too much of a klutz to do arrangements so I have not tried it but search the forum for 'camellia wax' or go to the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Waxing Camellia Blooms

    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 10:38PM
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nancyfc(z6b NJ)

Thanks so much for the information. If I didn't have to cook Thanksgiving dinner for a crowd, I would try it. I guess it's off to the florist for me this week, despite my lovely flowers outside (even though it has been in the 20's today).

    Bookmark   November 24, 2013 at 10:55PM
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vmr423(Zone 8b, SC)

Some varieties just do better as cut flowers than others. In general, japonicas keep best as cut flowers, but even then, some japonicas such as 'Gov Mouton' don't look good for long once cut.

The only tip I can offer is to cut the end of the cutting on as long of a slant as possible. There are things that people add to the water to keep flowers fresh such as a crushed aspirin, or sugar and apple cider vinegar or sugar and vodka. I don't know how well those things work, but it may be worth a shot if you'd like to supplement your floral displays with a few camellia arrangements...

There is a link on waxing camellias at the ACS web site, & it does look a bit complicated for someone who's busy cooking/entertaining.

Good luck & Happy Thanksgiving!

    Bookmark   November 28, 2013 at 2:30AM
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