• 63°

Darrell Blackwelder: Camellias are beginning to show their beautiful bloom colors

Sasanqua camellias (camellia sasanqua) are beginning to show their beautiful bloom colors throughout the county. Sasanqua-type camellias bloom in the fall while the larger bloomed camellia japonica species bloom in early spring. Sasanqua blooms are smaller and less showy than japonica-type camellias but are generally more reliable with a showcase of blooms peaking late October. The shrub is also more tolerant of sun and cold temperatures than the camellia japonica species. These multipurpose shrubs can be utilized as a colorful hedge row or they can be located in the landscape as specimen plants often pruned as tree-formed specimens.

Sasanqua Camellia bloom

Sasanquas have glossy, turgid dark-green leaves with an array of bloom color variations ranging from bright white to deep pinks. The shrubs are not immune to insects or disease problems, but generally do well in our area.

Camellias are acid-loving plants intolerant of alkaline soils, with nutritional requirements similar to azaleas, rhododendron and other acid-loving plants.  Specialty type azalea/camellia fertilizers are readily available local garden shops and retail outlets. Slow-release fertilizers work well because they seldom burn plants when properly applied.

Fertilizers to promote growth and bloom should be applied in the spring with split applications. Never apply lime around camellia sasanquas or other acid-loving plants. Go to https://plants.ces.ncsu.edu/plants/camellia-sasanqua/ for more detailed information on camellia sasanquas.

Darrell Blackwelder is the retired horticulture agent and director with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service in Rowan County. Contact him at deblackw@ncsu.edu .



Mother, son killed in weekend homicide

Ask Us

Ask Us: What are plans if hospitals reach COVID-19 capacity?


County tops 38,000 ballots cast during early, absentee voting


Political Notebook: Rowan Board of Elections receives more than 60,000 pens for voters


New storm Zeta a hurricane threat to Mexico, US Gulf Coast


Blotter: Teenager charged with felony firearm and drug offenses


GOP slowly gaining nationwide as early vote total surpasses 2016


BlockWork returns for 10th year of beautification


Big Chili Cook Off changes format, sells 250 tickets


Kiwanis Club names five recipients of Centennial Awards


Rowan County bridge dedicated to local police officer who made ultimate sacrifice


Camp Barnhardt to host drive-in movie, trick-or-treat


Spicing things up: Mise En Place food truck finds success serving Indian fare


Church foundation distributes record amount of money


Biz Roundup: ‘Forward Rowan’ continues to draw support, raise money


School board set to vote on Faith, Enochville closures Monday


Local health officials worry pandemic will cause long-term effects for children’s health


Ordinance change needed to address night train noise in Salisbury


Election 2020: Heggins, Warren talk racial injustice, economy


Cunningham keeps low in NC Senate race marked by his affair


Two bodies found in home on Lincolnton Road


Man arrested in Kannapolis plotted to kill Biden, found with guns, explosive material, court documents state


Flagger clipped by vehicle, taken to hospital with minor injuries


County finishes week with five deaths, one of 36 to receive letter from state health officials