The Q&A Archives: Camellia Plant

Question: I e-mailed you re my camellia plant in front entranceway/wall/trellis (rust leaves) & you responded but I misled you with my thoughts of rust leaves. There are no mites. Leaves are brown (1/2 leaf) & dry/crumbly. I don't think they are burned (a.m. sun & filtered p.m sun).The plant is in an area that slopes down near the edge of wall. Possibly not enough water? Has some bright shiney new leaves.

Answer: If the leaves are half brown and half green (as opposed to having spots) then water stress is the problem. Not enough water going deep enough to satisfy the roots. Since it is on a slope you might need to dig a watering basin around the base of the plant (to create a level area for water). Then fill the basin, allow to drain, then fill a second time. Do this once a week and you should see a big improvement in the health of your plant. You can prune your camellia back to remove some of the affected leaves and to encourage healthy new growth that will cover the remainder of the affected leaves. Best wishes with your camellia.

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