pruning camellias - Knowledgebase Question

Rome, Ge
Question by puddle_ducks
February 16, 2011
I have a Pink Perfection that is very old and at least 10 ft tall.I don't know that it has ever been pruned.I air layered some new plants last summer and want to do a few more this summer.S hould I just skip the pruning. The

Answer from NGA
February 16, 2011


If your camellia is loaded with flower buds, hold off on pruning until after the flowers have faded. Camellias tend to develop far more flower buds than they are capable of opening and you can sometimes encourage them to produce fewer, but larger flowers if you selectively thin out the flower buds as they begin to develop. You can try this now and see if the remaining flower buds develop into much larger flowers. Remove at least half of the unopened buds now.

Since you want to propagate the shrub, I'd suggest waiting until after your air layering is complete at the end of the summer. At that time you can prune the plant all over to reduce the size and to encourage a neat appearance. Best wishes with your camellia.

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