Camellias in Bloom
As winter approaches, many gardeners begin to look for plants that extend the length of the growing season. One of their top picks is the camellia. Once considered the jewel of the southern garden, these beautiful evergreen shrubs exhibit large, striking flowers ranging from pink and red to white.
Camellias truly are a cosmopolitan flower. Many centuries before they were imported to Europe, they were cultivated in the gardens of China and Japan. These flowers draw a line that can be traced throughout Asian culture. In China, the flower functions as a symbol of longevity, while in Japan, camellias stand up as symbols of the divine and the spiritual, and are often affiliated with the spring season. In Korea, camellias are utilized for weddings and religious ceremonies.
Decades of extensive breeding have granted us with hardier varieties of camellias. While winter-blooming camellias are still not suited for the northeastern climate—where flowers are susceptible to damage by frost—fall blooming camellias are an excellent addition to any garden. We currently have five different varieties of camellia growing in the Park including ‘Winter’s Star’, ‘Northern Exposure’, ‘April Rose’, and ‘Winter’s Charm’. You can catch all of these camellias in full blooms at the 26th Street and Madison Avenue entrance. These beautiful flowers will continue to bloom into December, when temperatures drop even further.