RATA’s Trees of the Week – Camellias 🌺 – 18th October 2021

This week we present an evergreen in the middle of a vibrant colour show.  These Camellia varieties are currently in show season, with shades ranging from charming yellows and pinks, through to the kind of intoxicating deep reds that draw your gaze in and don’t let it go.

Camellia’s have a rich history and can trace their history back some 5000 years, to China and Japan where they were used in early teas.  Chinese Monks, recognising their beauty, would also cultivate them by the entrance ways and gardens within the temple grounds.

It’s easy to see why.  With their glossy green foliage, they are well suited to hedging or clipping into standards or other topiary.  This makes them an ideal choice for year round aesthetics, that will then amaze and delight when the annual show starts.

Above: Tui feeding on the nectar in a Camellia specimen tree.

CAMELLIA ‘Brushfields Cream’ – Creamy/White Flowering Camellia

CAMELLIA ‘Brushfields Cream’ Cream/Whilte Flowered Camellia, 35lt container, bushy at 0.5-1m now (measured from top of container) – approx 4-5 year old

Hybrid, White with creamy yellow petaloids, medium, anemone form, early to late season, medium compact upright grower. Can be trimmed into attractive standards. Evergreen, grows to 2 x 1.5m.

CAMELLIA ‘Les Jury’ – Red Flowering Camellia

CAMELLIA ‘Les Jury’ – Red Flowering Camellia, 35lt container, at 1.5-1.7m now (measured from top of container) – approx 5 years old

Strong upright compact growing habit. Medium to large peony to formal double flowers, rich red mid-season. Excellent for hedging with columnar form and brilliant soft maroon new foliage. Grows to 4m.

CAMELLIA ‘Roger Hall’ – Red Flowering Camellia

CAMELLIA ‘Roger Hall’ – Red Flowering Camellia, 35lt container, bushy 0.5-1m now (measured from top of container)

Has beautiful, formal, double red flowers. The flowers contrast well against the glossy, green foliage. Outstanding performer which makes strong statement either in the garden or a container. Happiest in semi-shade with acid soil. Hardy, Evergreen, grows to 3 x 2m.

CAMELLIA ‘Spring Festival’ – Pink Flowering Camellia

CAMELLIA ‘Spring Festival’ – Pink Flowering Camellia, 35lt container, at 1.6-1.8m (measured from top of container) now

Narrow columnar growth habit, flowers mature rose formal double pink shading to light pink in centre mid to late season. Grows to 3m.