Our Plant Pick: Camellias

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Nov 10, 2016 10:11:24 AM

Our Plant Pick: Camellias

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Camellias are a hardy evergreen shrub native to eastern and southern Asia. They have a long history of cultivation there, as the leaves of one species - Camellia sinensis - are harvested to produce tea. Ornamental varieties such as the Japanese (Camellia japonica) and Sun (Camellia sasanqua) are commonly found in the United States, although there is nothing common about the beauty and diversity offered by this flowering shrub. 

GA_FOL_Janet-Camellia-s-WEB-658155-edited.jpgCamellia flowers come in six forms: anemone, formal double, peony, rose-form double, semi-double and single. These flowers come in white, pink, red or a combination thereof resulting in dozens of unique varieties. Sacramento is the Camellia Capital of the World, if you walk around the grid this winter you may be graced by the sight of 15-foot-tall camellia shrubs in bloom, some of them over 100 years old.

Despite their delicate appearance, Camellias are actually very resilient. They thrive in our climate when planted in rich, acidic soil with afternoon shade. Starting in late summer, fertilize with a low nitrogen fertilizer such as E.B. Stone Ultra Bloom to encourage cold hardiness and maximum flowering. Clean up flowers that have fallen to reduce your risk of petal blight, a fungal disease which causes rust-colored spots on petals. After bloom, prune to shape and fertilize again with E.B. Stone Azalea & Camellia food. 

Janet's plant pick is Camellias because:

"The sasanqua varieties start blooming in the fall, and then the japonicas go all the way through spring, keeping color in the garden all winter long."

Are you looking to keep your garden colorful this season? Check out some cool-season container ideas  Winter Container Ideas

 

Topics: Fall Shrubs, Winter, Flowers, Shrubs, Planting Ideas, Flowers for Shade, Camellias

Our Plant Pick: Hydrangeas

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on Jul 21, 2016 3:57:22 PM

Our Plant Pick: Hydrangeas

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Nothing compares to Hydrangeas. They are the most versatile plant you can grow in the shade, ranging from small to large shrubs, climbing vines, and even patio trees. Showy bracts surround inconspicuous flowers which bloom throughout the spring, lasting much longer than most flowers do as it is bracts, as opposed to the petals, that are colorful. These flowers can be quite diverse as well, from lacecap varieties to multi-colored flowers and even reblooming varieties such as the Endless Summer® and Let's Dance® series.  

luisa_lauren_hydrangea-793709-edited.jpgIn the Sacramento Area, Hydrangeas are comfortable in a little morning sun, but no late afternoon sun. They thrive in rich soil, well-mulched to a depth of two-to-three inches. This showy shrub is also unique in that its flowers change color in reaction to the the acidity (pH) of the soil, except white varieties which stay white. If you're soil is acidic, the flowers will lean towards blue,  if it's alkaline, the flowers will be pink. To change the color of your Hydrangeas flowers in spring, you must feed them the previous fall with an amendment that alters pH. Try E.B. Stone Cottonseed Meal for blue, and E.B. Stone Naturals Agricultural Lime to go pink. Most Hydrangeas should be pruned after they've finished blooming, but no later than mid-August. This is because they bloom on old wood, and if you prune them late in the year, it may be at the expense of next year's flowers. Reblooming varieties such as the Endless Summer® and Let's Dance® series bloom on both old and new wood, so they can be trimmed any time. 

Luisa and Lauren love Hydrangeas because:

"The flowers are enormous, sometimes reaching ten inches across, and they can bloom for months!"

 Want more flowers that look fabulous in bouquets?  Cut-Flower Gardening

Topics: Shrubs, Summer, Flowers for Shade, Hydrangeas

Our Plant Pick: Flowering Maple

Posted by Green Acres Nursery & Supply on May 13, 2016 3:46:03 PM

Our Plant Pick: Flowering Maple

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Flowering Maples (Abutilon spp.) are one of the most versatile and accommodating evergreen shrubs for shade. They come in a variety of colors, including yellow, red, orange, white and many shades of pink. There are compact varieties, which stay small and mounding, and vining-shrub types which can be pruned to stay low or trained vertically onto a trellis or fence. 

Kristina_Abutilon-959714-edited.jpgProbably their most attractive quality has to be how easy they are to grow. Flowering Maples are very forgiving of occasional neglect and flower sporadically spring through fall, attracting a variety of pollinators such as hummingbirds to the garden. A chameleon of a shady border, Flowering Maples will fit perfectly in the ground, containers, trained into a small tree or trellised onto an arbor or wall. 

They're Kristina's plant pick because:

 "The beautiful bell-shaped flowers are almost always blooming, and the hummingbirds love it!"

Looking to attract the attention of feathered friends?

  Hummingbird Plants

 

Topics: Container Ideas, Hummingbirds, pollinators, Flowers for Shade

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