Ask a Question forum: Camellia declining

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New South Wales, Australia (Zone 9b)
Bee Lover Region: Australia Cactus and Succulents Ponds
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Zachari
Jan 15, 2017 2:42 AM CST
I have had this particular Camellia Sasanqua for over 10 years now. A year ago it stopped flowering and lost a few leaves, which was odd as it had looked after itself for the time I have had it, and I assumed it had outgrown its pot, so I found a suitable location and planted it into the ground. Soon after it started flowering again and all was good. Then not long ago it started to leaf drop again, more severely, so I decided to put it back into a larger pot so I could control its environment better, and again it started with the new growth (no flowers) but it looked like it was improving. Now it is at its lowest point, you could count the leaves on it. It is planted in a half wine barrel, I've drilled drainage holes in it (raised) and I've moved it to a location with no harsh afternoon sun, but will get sun just past midday. It's also planted in Osmocote camellia soil mix.
There's no visible signs of disease I can identify and the stems are still green inside on the branches with no leaves.
The leaves seem to go hard (still green) before falling off
Does any one know what I can do to revive it? Thanks in advance πŸ™‚
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[Last edited by Zachari - Jan 15, 2017 5:35 AM (+)]
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Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Jan 15, 2017 10:07 AM CST
Its odd ???? After ten yrs its acting up on you. Did you move ? I've allways hear not to leave dead flowers on the ground. First. Id get it out of afternoon sun. They just need a little morning sun. Or even grow with just in-direct sunlite. A patio for example. Get all the dead wood off of it. Put in shady spot. And get some camellia food for it. A better expert than i will be around. Soon
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New South Wales, Australia (Zone 9b)
Bee Lover Region: Australia Cactus and Succulents Ponds
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Zachari
Jan 15, 2017 10:15 PM CST
Philipwonel said:Its odd ???? After ten yrs its acting up on you. Did you move ? I've allways hear not to leave dead flowers on the ground. First. Id get it out of afternoon sun. They just need a little morning sun. Or even grow with just in-direct sunlite. A patio for example. Get all the dead wood off of it. Put in shady spot. And get some camellia food for it. A better expert than i will be around. Soon
Thumbs up Welcome!
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Thanks for your response Philip! Smiling
I haven't moved location, although the camellia now lives at the back of the house rather than the front, but still has the shed behind it, so only perhaps slightly more sun, nothing drastic. I might move it under my shade cloth and see how it goes! Hopefully it's not too late!! Crossing Fingers!
New South Wales, Australia (Zone 9b)
Bee Lover Region: Australia Cactus and Succulents Ponds
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Zachari
Jan 23, 2017 10:24 PM CST
I might need to bump this thread...
I've moved it under a shade cloth and cut it back a little since and the leaves are still crunching... down to probably 20 little leaves Confused Sad
Any other suggestions??
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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DaisyI
Jan 23, 2017 10:56 PM CST
Have you ever fertilized with Camellia friendly fertilizer? They are heavy feeders and need a specific fertilizer for their particular needs.

It just seems peculiar to me that the plant does well AFTER you move it and then declines.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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New South Wales, Australia (Zone 9b)
Bee Lover Region: Australia Cactus and Succulents Ponds
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Zachari
Jan 23, 2017 11:38 PM CST
DaisyI said:Have you ever fertilized with Camellia friendly fertilizer? They are heavy feeders and need a specific fertilizer for their particular needs.

It just seems peculiar to me that the plant does well AFTER you move it and then declines.


I have given it Flourish soluble camellia food. It just seems to be on a roller coaster! Could it possibly be climate related? The temperature here does go from one extreme to the other...
I just don't know what what would be causing the leaves to go crunchy still Confused

Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Jan 24, 2017 8:16 AM CST
Aahoy there ! Zac ! Philip again.
After reading you question again. Something dawned on me. Have you ever repotted it , and pruned roots ? Could be that its so bloody root-bound. That the roots are so wadded up that water can only get to the outer roots. Hears what i'd do. Pull her out of pot and put her in a big bucket of water to soak for hour or so. While shes soaking. Do some severe pruning. After shes soaked. Keep roots under water and gently brake root ball open. You'll probably be surprised how long of roots she has. Camelias do grow big 6 to 8 feet or better. So a pot does her no justice. She'll be happier in ground. Plant her with some damp soil and wait a couple days to water her. So roots can heal.
I'm a gamblin she'll come back 😁

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Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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dyzzypyxxy
Jan 24, 2017 8:29 AM CST
I agree with Philip that this plant has a better chance of recovery if planted in ground. The root system is more protected from heat in the ground. May I add, you definitely should keep that plant under shade cloth until it has recovered to former vigor. A stressed plant doesn't need direct sun, especially strong Australian sun.

It is very odd that this plant did well for 10 years before now. IF the plant is in the same general vicinity, did the light conditions change, maybe? A tree branch trimmed back could give the plant a couple more hours of full sun than it had before? Are there possibly tree roots invading the area where you had it in the ground?

Have you checked your garden soil's pH? Camellias do love their soil acidity to be high.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
New South Wales, Australia (Zone 9b)
Bee Lover Region: Australia Cactus and Succulents Ponds
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Zachari
Jan 25, 2017 11:44 PM CST
Thank You!

Her roots were pretty compacted, and I trimmed her back and added some peat moss and compost to raise the acidity a bit. Hopefully she'll be on the mend Smiling

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