(SPRING MEETINGS CANCELLED DUE TO COVID-19)
Topic: Season Kickoff
Where - NHC Arboretum
Date - September 15
TIME - Welcome 6:30, Meeting at 7:00 P.M.
(Check back this summer for details.)
May Camellia Care
Now and through the summer, water if two weeks pass without a half inch of rain.
Mulch plants, away from the trunk, with 2-4 inches of pine straw or your favorite mulch.
If you want to root new growth cuttings, May through August is the best time to do it.
If you haven't yet done so this spring, apply an Azalea/ Rhododendron/ Camellia fertilizer, e.g., Vertagro 16-4-8, or Holly Tone, or your favorite organic. Use a slow release product, e.g., Osmocote, for potted camellias. Follow fertilizer instructions, e.g., for a large plant (6 ft or higher), sprinkle 1 cup of fertilizer at the drip line. Water in the fertilizer after application.
Check pH of soil and add necessary chemicals to keep in the 6.0-7.0 range - sulfur to lower pH (more acid) and dolomitic lime to raise it (more alkaline).
If scale or other insect problems are observed, spray plants with dormant oil (All Season, NEEM, or Volck), if the daily temperature is below 80 degrees. For temperatures above 80 degrees, use an alternative to oil spray, e.g., Sevin powder or a systemic insecticide. Avoid pesticides that will remain after the camellias bloom to minimize impact on bees or other pollinators.
Still a good time for air-layering (a propagation technique).
Also a good time to plant new or indoor over-wintered camellias, after the last frost.