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Bedfordshire, United Kingdom Gb

My Camellia dropped every opening flower after they had turned brown. I keep it sheltered from the morning sun. My friend over-winters hers in the summerhouse- should I do the same , or should I cover it with fleece on frosty nights. It was bought as a present and bears my full name, so it is very special.



Hi Rosiebeck, if the flowers are dropping when they have gone brown, I don't see a problem, that's what they do, do you have acid soil?, if so it would be better planted directly in the ground, Camelia's are hardy, and only need the flowers protecting from early morning sun after a frost, when they get burnt and drop off, there is no need to overwinter in a summerhouse or anywhere else, if we get a prolonged very cold spell, you could wrap the pot in bubble wrap, to prevent the roots from freezing solid and dieing, which is another good reason to plant in the soil, they need no protection whatsoever, as long as you keep the early morning sun off the flowers after a frost, and feed now and again with an ericaceous feed, you will have no problems, Derek.

8 Jun, 2013


Rosie, did you mean the flowers went brown just as they were opening?

8 Jun, 2013


Thank you, Derekm and Steragram. Sorry if I didn't make myself clear. The buds on my Camellia went brown before they opened, and every one of them dropped off. I can't plant it in the ground as we are on lime clay. I water it with rain water, and feed it with ericacious feed. It is in a very sheltered spot, away from the early sun. I will try to wrap the pot in bubble wrap next winter, although it is large and heavy and not easy to move round. Thanks again, Margaret

9 Jun, 2013


Hi Rosiebeck, this has happened to a lot of the flowers on mine this year, I've just put it down to the weather conditions in the spring, and nothing to worry about.
Don't wrap the pot up completely, just round the sides, and into the middle, if you put bubble wrap underneath, the water will not be able to drain away, and it doesn't need to be on all winter, just if a prolonged spell of extremely cold weather, if it isn't already, try to raise the pot off the ground with pot feet, or a couple of bricks, just to let water drain away more quickly, Derek.

9 Jun, 2013


Thank you, Derekm, I will do that and keep my fingers crossed for a better Spring next year....along with everyone else.

9 Jun, 2013


I have many large camellias at my Long Island, New York home that are in the ground and covered in snow during the winter. They have beautiful blooms in the early spring, and most times when there is still some snow. I did however, keep them sheltered when they were small and just planted. I did this for about 3 seasons.

In my California home I also have several large camillias. The only difference is that I must keep the moisture up when it turns 100 degress F. And this tempurature can occurr in spring and summer.

I read with intrigue your statement "I keep it sheltered from the morning sun".
I have never heard such a thing. But I do understand your reasoning.Camillias may benefit from some shade from the hot afternoon sun, if you can arrange your plants that way. But they do need sun and I would say the morning sun is better than the hot afternoon sun of the summer or any season.

Bloom drop is usually caused by lack of water if in the ground, or too much water if your plant is pot bound.It can also have contracted a disease. If so, remove and trash the unopened blooms. Also, never feed camillias during the formation of the flower. Lightly feed in the months before formation.

13 Jun, 2013


Sheltering from the morning sun is so that if the buds are touched by frost they can thaw out slowly. Sudden thawing in warm sun will brown the petals. The climate in the UK is rather different from either NY or California- our Spring can be a bit stop and start - which probably explains why you've never found it necessary!

14 Jun, 2013

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