The Q&A Archives: Camellia

Question: My camellia is 2 years old. Every year, it produced a whole bunch of pretty, round, red buds. But only 1/3 actually bloomed. The rest just gradually turned brown & dropped off. What could be its problem?

Answer: Camellias have a reputation for setting more buds than they can open, so bud drop is a natural phenomenon, especially if your plant is otherwise healthy and growing well. As your plant matures it will have the reserved energy to open more and more of the buds it develops. However, bud drop can be caused by overwatering in the cool months, or underwatering in the summer. Bud drop can also be caused by spells of very low humidity. Monitor your plant for signs of ill-health, and after flower buds form, thin clusters at branch tips to one or two fat flower buds, leaving the slender leaf buds alone. The

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