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Why won't my camellia flowers open?

The flower buds are quite large and you can see the colour of the flower but instead of opening they just go brown on the outside and fall off. The tree gets lots of flower buds but they just dont open. Is it a feeding issue. The house has been a rental for a while and tenants dont usually look after gardens too well.

Flowers and Ornamentals • Pests

Hi Jen,

What a shame the buds on your camellia bush are going brown and falling off before you have a chance to enjoy them. Problems such as bud drop or flowers failing to open may be an environmental problem. The plants may have produced too many flowers or have been damaged by the sun, overwatering, poor drainage or lack of nutrients. There is also a pest called the camellia bud mite that can cause premature bud drop. Your camellia will be putting on new growth and forming new buds for next year so to ensure your plant receive the nutrients it needs to produce flowers for you next year, you will need to apply a fertiliser that is particularly formulated for camellias. We would suggest applying Yates Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver & Plant Fertiliser. It can be applied now and again in autumn. Regular watering during the summer and autumn months will also help to keep those buds healthy. Inspect your camellia on a regular basis for mite damage and if damage is noticed, apply a product called Nature's Way Insect & Mite Killer to control this pest. Ensure that your camellia is protected from the hot afternoon sun and when watering in the morning, try to avoid getting water on those newly formed buds. If moisture is left on the buds and those buds are exposed to the sun, the buds can burn and go brown. Good luck with looking after this beautiful plant. I am sure next year it will produce many spectacular flowers for you.



Answered: 12 Nov, 2012

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