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Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...

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pinkcamellia
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Subject: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
I have a pink camellia in a tub that I inherited from my mother six years ago and which I named my business after and this year it looks as if the buds may not open.

One looked about to open a few weeks ago before we had some more awful weather and now all the buds look unhealthy and as if they may not flower. The bush is covered in buds and usually at this time of year gives a wonderful display.

I live in rural Staffordshire and we have had some very cold nights.

Is it beyond hope this year and if so will my rhododendron, which also is potted, follow in the same gloomy way?

http://www.pinkcamellia.com
bideshiuk
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Subject: Re: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
Possibilties:

The buds have got frosted. Camellias are pretty tough (the hybrid ones that normally flower outside, anyway), but if the temperature drops below freezing when the buds start to open, it will spoil the flowers. But camellias open blooms over quite a long period, so you would still get the later flowers if this were the case.

Drought. Not now, but when the flower buds were being formed. Dryness at the roots is the likeliest cause of camellias not flowering. Most come from the monsoon regions of the world where summers are wet, winters drier. But given the weather last summer, it's unlikely this is the cause, especially if the plant has flowered in the past.

Tired potting compost? How long has it been in the pot? When did it last get a feed. It almost certainly needs a fresh mix, and probably a larger pot.

Your rhodo. It doesn't look like being a great rhodo year anyway - you can't win'em all. Presumably you grow your rhodo in a pot because your soil is alkaline? Or is it one of the wonderful tender ones that need winter protection? Again, repot it in some fresh mix - loam based preferably. Rhodos have a raft of fibrous roots and are easy to move at just about any time of year. If it's a full-sized shrub (rather than a dwarf variety) it needs at least a half-barrel.

Hope this sheds some light.

AdrienneWyper
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Subject: Re: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
Yep, my poor white camellia is covered in brown, crispy frost-burnt buds too. Vexing
bideshiuk
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Subject: Re: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
Oh you poor southern souls. Here in Scotland the camellias are flowering a storm, and the early rhodos and magnolias are coming into bloom bigtime. Ha!

Actually Adrienne, the white ones do suffer from all sorts of weather damage, but are so pristine and wonderful in the years when they DO get it right, that it's worth the frustration. Is it 'Cornish Snow'?
jooliewoolie
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Subject: Re: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
Well Bideshi my camellias are in full bloom at the mo,and look a picture of health.lol!!! but they are in my front garden so quite protected.i dont need to feed them as the elderly lady next door feeds hers and then feeds mine.hehe!!!! xxxx
pinkcamellia
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Subject: Re: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
Thanks for the help.

I have learnt to water well when the buds are being formed but you may be right about new compost-it's been 5 years-presumably that's too long?

Looking closely new buds are forming- will these flower in due course? I thought the buds were all formed the previous year so I'm a bit puzzled about that.

I've also got a very sad azalea in the garden which I think needs to be put in ericaceouus compost in a tub but would love to know when is the best time of year to do that.

All help much appreciated!!
pamelauk12
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Subject: Re: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
Quoted:
Oh you poor southern souls. Here in Scotland the camellias are flowering a storm, and the early rhodos and magnolias are coming into bloom bigtime. Ha! Actually Adrienne, the white ones do suffer from all sorts of weather damage, but are so pristine and wonderful in the years when they DO get it right, that it's worth the frustration. Is it 'Cornish Snow'?
Posted by bideshi
pamelauk12
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Subject: Re: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
I, too,live in the s.e. corner of England (Kent) although I am Scottish and have had problems with my pink camellia which is so very disappointing after having it for about 5 to 6 years now. Until last year it seemed to flourish but then it had a lot of brown spots on the buds but some did form into flowers although not nearly so many as in previous years. However this year there do not appear to have been any buds at all and my plant is looking a little bit sorry for itself. I would like to know how I can save it by doing whatever I can to it please. It is in a fairly shaded spot as conifers are around it and I wonder if it is lacking moisture from these.
Frillz
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Subject: Re: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
Not a solution now, but two tips for the future.

One is fleece blanketing for the winter frosts, and the other, my mother swears by is once the camelias start to show buds, feed with tomato food.

Don't know if that's of use to anyone.
pinkcamellia
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Subject: Re: Help-my pink camellia's not flowering...
Thanks for all the advice. Was told yesterday main thing is to avoid morning sun so should be west facing.

So, will cover with fleece & move the pot next year!!
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