Camellias in the garden
Camellias belong to the theacee, there are about a dozen species, among which only a few are grown as ornamental plants; for centuries cultivated in Europe, in reality the Camellias are native to Asia, and in particular to China, Japan and Korea. These are medium or large shrubs, ranging from one meter up to 4-5 meters if they are in optimal soil and climatic conditions; the camellias are evergreen, the foliage is dark green, bright, oval in shape. Camellias are grown for their flowering, large pinkish-colored buds, similar to large roses, are very popular, and many hybrids are now common in the garden.
The most widespread species as ornamental plants are Camellia japonica and its hybrids; it is a medium-sized shrub, pinkish flowering, with single, double or stradoppio flower, depending on the variety. The flowers of camellia japonica they bloom at the end of winter, if the season is particularly hot they can bloom already in January, if the climate is rather harsh we will have a later flowering, towards April or even May. To obtain a luxuriant and healthy shrub it is necessary to grow camellia in the garden, in the ground or in a pot, using a specific soil for acidophilic plants, since they have difficulty using the iron present in the soil, especially if the presence of calcium is high, or if the water supplied is very calcareous.
They are placed in a partially shaded place, because the very intense direct insolation causes the leaves to dry out; moreover, camellias love a fairly humid climate, therefore excessive sun can dry the air excessively. In most Italian regions the camellia japonica it can be grown in the garden all year round, as long as it is kept away from the winter wind; in regions with winters with temperatures below -10 / -15 ° C it is advisable to grow these plants in a large pot, so that they can be moved away during the coldest weeks of the year.
The watering will be very regular, from March to October, keeping the soil always quite humid, but not soaked with water; during the cold months the watering will be sporadic: only in case of very long drought.