Camellias and Rhodos are wonderfully versatile. They can be grown as specimen trees, a hedge, a standard, some even grow as a groundcover. Camellias can be espaliered against a wall or fence, grown as a container plant as well as making a successful bonsai specimen. Camellias and Rhodos also work well as fillers under large deciduous trees or as a background plant to provide a glossy green foil for summer flowering plants.
Semi-shaded conditions are ideal, but some varieties will also survive in full sun. The important thing with is not to let their roots get too hot, therefore a layer of mulch is desirable. Camellias & Rhodos like slightly acidic, moist, free draining soil; if you have heavy clay incorporate plenty of compost, peat and gypsum at planting time to aid drainage. If your soil is still waterlogged you may need to make a raised bed, as they can develop root rot in waterlogged sites.
Camellias and Rhodos are acid loving plants and don’t liked to be over feed. Use any good acid fertiliser when planting, adding sheep pellets also to give them a boost. Yellowing leaves is often due to a magnesium deficiency; in this case, you should apply Epsom Salts or Sequestron Plant Tonic. If you’re not sure, bring us a few leaves and we can diagnose any issue you may have.
General pruning to keep the plant tidy is all that is required. Pruning should be done no later than the end of October otherwise you are removing next year’s flowers.
Generally, not a big issue, but the main insect Rhodos will get is thrips. If you are experiencing any major infestations, then you must consider its position. Is your plant getting too much wind? Not enough water? Or are its roots too hot and dry?
As with all container plants, regular watering is essential; fertilising, little and often with Oderings Total Replenish is best. A mulch of compost is ideal, to keep the roots cool and stop the potting mix drying out. Some shade is also beneficial.