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How to Revive an Old Camellia Bush

By Barbara Raskauskas ; Updated September 21, 2017
Camellia blossom
Camélia image by Dominique LUZY from Fotolia.com

The camellia, with its dark, glossy green leaves, is a slow growing evergreen bush that can reach a height of 15 feet. Large blooms of white, pink, red or purple appear in late winter in colder regions, making the camellia bush a sought after addition to the landscape. Thriving in part shade to full shade, with proper care, a camellia will be healthy and keep delivering blooms year after year. Pruning after the bush blooms and before new growth appears can help to revive an old camellia bush.

Clean tools by wiping with alcohol or dipping in a mixture of 1 part bleach to 9 parts water.

Cut dead, insect infested or broken limbs at the trunk.

Cut rogue limbs that project out beyond the shape of the bush. Cut back any limbs to attain a desired height and width suitable for the location or to thin the bush.

Cut a camellia back by one-third when the overall shape or condition cannot be improved with general pruning. Repeat the one-third pruning every year for three years, at which time all growth should be new.

Cut a camellia to the ground if the bush has been damaged by storm, insects or other calamity. Even when severely pruned, the bush will re-grow though it may not bloom the first season.


Things You Will Need

  • Pruners
  • Loppers

About the Author


Barbara Raskauskas's favorite pursuits are home improvement, landscape design, organic gardening and blogging. Her Internet writing appears on SASS Magazine, AT&T and various other websites. Raskauskas is active in the small business she and her husband have owned since 2000 and is a former MS Office instructor.