Wednesday, January 7

Garden Pic Wednesday: Camellias

Winter color in the garden is hard to come by, but here in the south we have one shrub that blooms between December & February, brightening landscapes with it's rose-like blossoms. Camellias.
Thus their nickname: "Rose of Winter."
Actually they can tolerate temps to minus 5 degrees and as hot as 100 degrees and there are 3000 varieties!

I don't have any camellias actually in my yard, because the standard shrub needs yearly pruning back to keep in check, otherwise they can become huge and ungainly.  I often see camellia gone wild in abandoned landscapes.
Last time I asked about dwarf varieties, the garden shop down the road was bleak on the topic. 
But my neighbor has a pair of standard size red camellia shrubs on the border between our houses and I enjoy those. In fact, I take of pruning them into an upright tree-like shape, so they won't turn into 20 foot wide monstrosities draping into my landscape! 
 The people who originally built the house actually planted them just before they sold it and moved away years ago and the two different owners since then pretty much ignore all that shrubs on that side of the house, which happens to be the windowless outer garage wall anyway.

So today's Garden Pics to brighten your winter day is a couple camellias:
First, the rose-like red one next door:

Next: a pink camellia from a neighbor's hedge a couple blocks away I shot the same day I was out photographing the Firethorn.
 You'll notice this camellia has a peony-like look.

Of the two, I like the red best.
Stop back tomorrow for Mama Kat!

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