The Q&A Archives: Recommended Camellia Varieties Under Redwood

Question: I have some redwoods which are trimmed up to about 15 feet. It is still pretty shady under them, and there are lots of roots. Are there any especially vigorous and fast varieties of camellias you could recommend that could grow to 8-12 feet (or even some other shrub to use as a screen)?
I have planted aucuba, but want to try some other shrubs.

Answer: Once the roots of a camellia are established, the plants are relatively drought tolerant and don't seem to mind competing with tree roots for moisture. Camellias grows best in shady environments and most will reach 10' - 15' in height and width at maturity. Camellia sasanqua 'Mason Farm' produces white-tinged pink flowers and rapid growth to 8' tall; 6' wide. C. japonica 'April Remembered' is a moderate grower (6-8' tall and wide), and a long season of cream to pink flowers.

Other suggestions for shrubs: Japanese andromeda (Pieris japonica) is an evergreen shrub that grows 5 to 8 feet under cultivation. It is valued for its shiny dark-green foliage and early flowers similar to lily of the valley. The young foliage is a rich reddish bronze. Arrowwood (Viburnum dentatum) is a deciduous shrub that grows 8 to
15 feet. It produces white flowers in late spring and shiny red foliage in autumn. Gray dogwood (Cornus racemosa) is a deciduous shrub that grows 6 to 15 feet. It develops white flowers in June and then white berries on pink stems. Nandina (Nandina domestica) is an evergreen shrub that grows 6 to 8 feet. It produces large clusters of white flowers in mid-summer, and red berries in autumn and winter.

Best wishes with your landscape!

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