April usually signifies the start of spring for those of us in the deep south. The Camellias are still in bloom but are gradually waning. Some late bloomers stick around but are slowly being ushered out of the garden and being replaced with Azaleas, Tulip Magnolias and Daffodils.
The blooms may be going, but your tasks in the garden are just starting. These are some things that you will want to start doing now if you live in zone 8 or 9.
Adding a layer of mulch in the spring is a fabulous idea for keeping your camellias cool for the summer months to come. Organic mulch, leaves, straw or bark, not only adds beauty to your garden, but as the mulch breaks down, it adds vital nutrients back to the soil. Avoid any mulch that is not natural – that means no rubber and rocks.
We highly suggest using Hollytone™ & Milorganite™ or any other organic fertilizer for best results. Spring, Summer and Fall applications are recommended to keep your camellias happy for another year!
Water when the plant needs it – when it approaches dryness. Water with pure water and avoid additives such as water softeners and water that contains high concentrations of salt. DON’T WATER AT NIGHT to avoid fungal problems.
Insects, Pests & Diseases
Tea Scale, mites and some leaf eating insects can be found munching on your Camellias. Most of these can be controlled with the use of insecticides, oil sprays or soaps. Diseases are few, but root rot (from incorrect soils) leaf blights (leaf browning tips and margins) can occur in certain situations where environmental factors permit the development. All of these problems can be controlled first by proper care and controlling the factors that create the problems.
Gene’s Nursery carries all of your spring fertilizer and insect control products. We are open Fridays and Saturdays! Stop by and get your garden started this spring with our camellia care products.