The flowerwood plant, or flowerwood camellia (Camellia japonica) as it is commonly known, is a slow growing perennial shrub that reaches from 6 to 15 feet tall, depending on the species. The flowerwood plant is hardy to zones 6 and 7 and is the most common species of camellia grown in home gardens. Large rose-like flowers that bloom from early winter through early spring in colors such as red, pink, yellow or white and year-round, glossy, green foliage make this plant a beautiful addition to any yard.
Grow the flowerwood plant in a location that receives full morning sun and partial afternoon shade. The soil needs to be well-draining with a pH between 6.0 to 6.5. Add compost before planting to ensure a rich, well-draining soil.
Water your flowerwood two to three times weekly using a soaker hose for a deep watering. The soil should stay moist, but not soggy. Increase the watering time during blooming to encourage larger blooms. Watering during winter time may not be necessary if there is adequate rain and/or snow.
Fertilize with a slow-release balanced food, 10-10-10, following blooming in late spring. Flowerwood plants are not excessive feeders and therefore do not need much fertilizing. Apply fertilizer around the dripline of the plant instead of up against the trunk.
Apply a 3-inch layer of mulch, such as bark or chopped leaves, to help control the soil's moisture level and keep the temperature of the soil consistent. Mulch is extremely important during the first growing season until the plant is well established. To prevent disease, do not let the mulch touch the trunk.
Prune your plant after it is done blooming in the spring. Flowerwood plants usually just need a light shaping by clipping or pinching off the tips of the branches. Cut off any dead or diseased branches as needed also.
Check your flowerwood plant often for the most common pests, scale and spider mites, commonly found underneath the leaves. Treat with a homemade mixture of 1/2-cup of rubbing alcohol mixed with 1 quart of water in a spray bottle. Spray the leaves with this mixture, and wipe down the leaves with a damp cloth to remove any pests.
Rake up all the fallen blooms, petals and leaves from underneath the plant and dispose of them. This helps prevent a fungus called petal blight from infecting the plant.