There are many different ways to prune camellias, and many times certain pruning practices are designed to help with the maintenance of the plants. One of these pruning practices is referred to as “raising the skirt”. From the sound of it, you would think that this technique was thought up by a male!
Raising the skirt actually refers to the skirt or the body of the plant itself. Many times, lower limbs of camellias grow all the way down to the ground level. By pruning the lower limbs off to create an open space under the plant, you are allowing for
better air circulation. Installing fresh mulch and even fertilizing your plants with a raised skirt is easier than when the limbs are all the way down to the ground. This technique of raising the skirt also helps when it comes to spraying your camellias. When you are spraying with insecticides such as horticultural oil, you can do a much better job controlling and preventing tea scale and mites.
From my perspective, I think that the camellia plants look better when the skirt is raised. Regardless of the look, raising your camellias’ skirts will keep them healthier and easier to maintain.
The Gordy Camellia Garden Ocala Florida
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Gene Phillips is one of the owners of Gene’s Nursery in Savannah, Ga. He is a 2nd generation grower and attributes his love of Camellias to his father, who inspired him to breath in the beauty that they bring to him but more importantly to others. In his ‘free’ time, you’ll find him wandering through old gardens, trying to identify flowers or taking countless number of photos to share with others! He also enjoys meeting people and comparing ‘garden’ stories.