How to Grow a Camellia


Camellias can either grow as shrubs or trees. They can create an excellent all-natural border for your property, or you can just use one or two to complement the rest of your landscaping. Camellias are well known for the glossy red, white and pink flowers they produce. These flowers bloom in early spring. If you plant a camellia shrub or tree on your property, you will need to know how to encourage it to grow and reach its full potential.

Step 1

Grow your camellia in an area where it will receive partial shade. If it's in an area that receives full sun, transplant it. Camellias grow best when they can have a break from full sun.

Step 2

Sprinkle either 1 lb. of fish, blood or bone meal around the base of your camellia shrub or tree. According to Rotherview Nursery, the best time to apply the fertilizer is in April and June. Camellias do not require much fertilization. Do not fertilize your camellia when your plant it, or during the year following planting.

Step 3

Water your camellia deep down in to the soil, but allow the soil to dry out before watering again. If you do not do this, your camellia could suffer root rot, which they are prone to.

Step 4

Cover the soil around the base of your camellia shrub or tree with 3 inches of mulch. North Carolina State University recommends pine straw or pine bark mulch.

Step 5

Prune away any branches that begin to cover up flowers. Other than that, you can prune your camellia to a shape of your liking.

Tips and Warnings

  • Camellias prefer soil with a pH of 5.5 to 6.5. Perform a soil test before you plant a camellia.

Things You'll Need

  • Fish, blood, or bone meal
  • Mulch
  • Pruning shears


  • University of California, Davis: How to Grow Carefree Camellias
  • North Carolina State University: Camellia Culture
  • Camellia Maliflora
  • Rotherview Nursery: Growing Camellias
Keywords: growing camellias, camellia care, camellia maliflora

About this Author

Alicia Bodine has been a professional writer for six years. She has produced thousands of articles for online publications such as Demand Studios, Bright Hub, Associated Content and WiseGeek. Bodine is also the current cooking guru for LifeTips. She has received awards for being a top content producer.