Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Camellia Sport or Abnormality? And PPS!

Anyone who reads along with me knows I love camellias. Just simply adore them. Even without blooms the shrubs are very attractive. The leaves are super great and even when the plants grow odd leaves such as the one pictured above, I still like them.

This particular camelia is a white spring blooming sasanqua. It has several areas on the 4 foot shrub that have these oddly colored leaves. I don't know enough about plant breeding and plant genetics to determine if this plant has a 'sport' or just unusual variegated leaves or even a disease (say it ain't so!), but the leaf is not a normal leaf for this particular shrub. The shrub is most healthy and full of fat buds right now. There is no obvious sign of anything unusual. Does anyone have information about this kind of phenomenon occurring in camellias?

in the garden....

Tonight is the monthly meeting of the Middle Tennessee Perennial Plant Society. It starts at 7 pm at Cheekwood Botanical Garden in Nashville. The speaker is William Cullina, the plant and garden curator from Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens-I am so excited! He has a wonderful website with tons of pictures of all of our favorite flowers, and is a nationally recognized speaker and author. See why I love this society? I also ran across some more information on Mr. Cullina on a professional blog. Mr. Cullina is an author and you can find info about one of his books on this blog. I will there with some friends, if you read this blog and are there tonight I hope to see ya!


  1. Hello - I share your love of camellias! Our first flower this year began to open today, indeed. I think they like it here because our compost consists of so many tea-leaves :)

    I don't know the answer about the leaves, I'll be interested in what others say. I don't think it's a disease though.

  2. In the course of the last years, more and more people here in Belgium started to plant Camellia's. That seemed perfectly reasonable, because since ten years, our winters were fairly mild.
    Mij mother-in-law had a real beauty. Yes, I say 'had', because winter was very cold this year, and her Camellia has died.

  3. No help here on the camellias, but I sure hope that isn't a sign of disease. Wish I could grow them here.

    My blogging time is limited this week--loved your "gate within a gate." You have such an eye for design, Tina.

  4. Mother has camellias, I'll ask her. However, she did tell me our ice a few weeks ago hurt her camellias pretty bad. Is that yellow in the leaf? I'll let you know later today if I find out anything.
    Have a good day!

  5. Good Morning Everyone.
    I have no idea about the leaf coloration. Strange but pretty.
    I have a pink one that has been blooming since Jan. I don't have the name of it. It gives a lift to the spirit in winter when nothing is blooming.

  6. Hi Tina, I can't help either, but am envious of your luck with the camellias. Here is just a guess, I don't know how high up the affected leaf is, but could it be spots from a male dog relieving himself? Not very romantic, I know, but that is what happens when that liquid hits a green leaf. :-) Have fun at your meeting tonight and be safe.

  7. Hey all, Good morning! Wonderful day here.

    EB, Yes, camellias are great!

    Linda, Yes if you find anything else do please let me know as you are able to.

    Rose, You visit when you are able to and that is perfectly okay! Always happy to talk with you and you have always been so kind to me. I hope you come to Tennessee this year!

    Lola, Enjoy your pink camellia. They are super.

    Frances, No, not dog urine. It is quite high and in several spots. Some leaves are still turning. It is quite attractive though and I wonder if there is such a thing as a variegated camella? Oh well, I'll keep investigating. Thanks for the help.

  8. Good morning Tina, So far for the Camellia I have found the following sites.. not knowing exactly what yours looks like it is hard to tell if these apply
    http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/EP002 (this one doesn't have photos but does talk about leaf spot..black or white? who knows?)
    this one is a book posted in pdf that has some info-- http://americancamellias.aawsom.net/assets/pdf/yearbook_1955_22_some_camellia_diseases.pdf this one is more about variegations on the bloom- http://www.socalcamellias.org/subpage5.html
    I can't find anything definitive on white spots on leaves. Good luck. I may take a cutting over to the extension office and have them send it off to get tested.

  9. Tina -- I don't know about the camellia. The Camellia Forest Nursery is close to me. You'd love shopping there!


  10. I am sure what it is too, but I sure love your Camelias too! What with the lovely blooms it after seeing so many in your blog.

  11. Tina, Mother said her leaves always have some varigation in winter, but it disappears in spring. She always thought it was just the cold weather. She has never lost any plant that has these on the leaves.
    Hope this helps!

  12. I certainly admired the camellia in bloom on your previous post. I wish they were hardy in this area.

  13. You know, I have never grown Camellias, But they do look very pretty. Enjoy the meeting

  14. I hope it isn't a disease Tina, that would be a shame. Camelias are such beautiful additions to the garden, I'm definitely adding one of these to my garden this year.

  15. I would think that if the leaf doesn't like shirveled it might be a varigation. I'm with everyone else, hope it's not deseased but I know nothing about Camelias, they don't grow up here.

  16. Hi Tina~

    I, too, love the camelia especially the blossoms. They remind me of roses in some way. I hope the plant isn't diseased.

    Happy day!

  17. I think it looks like an ammonia or bleach type chemical have touched the leaf. Hum, kind of on Frances theory of doggie tink.

  18. I have never been to the Botanical Gardens in Boothbay but it is not very far from me so I really should go sometime as I read a lot about it in our local paper and it seems to be a very good one so I am sure you will enjoy the meeting.
    Maybe you could take a leaf with you and if you get a chance, as Mr. Cullina if he can shed some light on your puzzle. I do hope it is not diseased as that will be a shame.

  19. Janet, I think it is that first one! The yellow spot. Yuck but at least it will not kill the camellia. Only one has it so far out of about a dozen. Thanks!

    Cameron, Yes! I would go crazy there-best I stay away until I get a J-O-B as hubby says:)

    Chandramouli, Thanks! They are super all year-even with a bit of yellow mosaic.

    Darla, Nope, I think it is yellow mosaic or yellow spot. Too bad, I was hoping for a sport.

    Linda, Your mother is exactly right! According to the website Janet sent, this affects cold damaged leaves most but will not harm the camellia. I am so glad! Please tell your mom, thanks-no worries here now.

    Marnie, The breeders are working on that-won't be long and you'll be growing them.

    Zach, Thanks! Four of us are going and we are very excited.

    Racquel, Yes, a disease of sorts, uncureable but it shouldn't kill my camellia. So that is great! Do add one soon. They are beautiful all year and go well with hydrangeas.

    Dawn, Camellias are a southern favorite, usually deep south but we push their limits here. Do come visit soon!!

    Karrita, Thanks! The plant will be okay I think. Yeah! You have a great day too.

    Skeeter, Nope, this can't be it. No dogs up front and it is up too high. I am thinking the yellow mosaic. Urrrr! But it will be okay.

    Mom, Isn't it great the curator of MAINE'S Botanical Garden is coming here to talk to us? He is well known apparently. I just love our little group-well not so little, about 200 I guess. It will be fun and I bet there will be pics of Maine. Have a good day all, I am in the garden....

  20. Hi Tina,
    If the dicoloration isn't yellow, as in chlorosis, then it's probably just a bit of variegation that happens over cold winters. My pink camellia has some right now, usually along the margins, and it's perfectly healthy. Let's hope it's just that.

  21. Hi Tina,

    Love your camellias...too bad they don't have fragrance! That said, I just bought a camellia; against my better judgement... I don't have moist acidic soil but I do have new soil moving in and the perfect spot for White By The Gate...that's the name of the camellia and she is going in next to the gate. Perfect! An evergreen was required and she fits the bill! Wish me luck.

    So, the spots are not that serious? Let's talk tonight! See you!


  22. I've come to appreciate camellias for their year round appeal. Recently I planted several climbing camellias along the chain link fence. One even bloomed over winter, a sweet white color that popped in the shadows beneath the arborvitae. Lovely plants.

  23. I'm not sure what it could be. I do love camellias too though!

  24. It kind of looks like dead cells when I pull up the large picture. Maybe a bug got in there?

    It could very well be a mutation though too. Maybe you could get some answers from a local university or extension office.

  25. I had a camellia that was here when I moved in. I gave it a neighbor, who had a sentimental view of it due to the previous owners. I need to get another.

  26. OK, another stab at it. I am struck by how the pattern of it resembles other bi-colour leaves - Aucuba for instance. I've seen what chlorosis is like and it's not that. Since Chrisine's has it too, that figures.

  27. I don't have an answer for you either Tina but maybe you've found one by now?? I also love camellias too but can't grow them in this zone. Another reason I'd love to have a greenhouse. I would stuff it with all these beauties that aren't hardy enough to survive outdoors here.

  28. Don't be alarmed. Camellias will sometimes have variegated leaves but the variegation is not usually stable. Sometimes it is caused by a virus, but one that leaves no permanent damage. I am not sure why, but people who seriously breed Camellias look for ones with this type of variegation, perhaps they are easier to cross. Consider this just something they may do.

  29. I love camellias. One of my best memories of lower Alabama is of the year it snowed when the camellias were blooming. What a pretty sight!

    I've been enjoying looking through your blog at the bottle trees.

  30. Thanks guy and gals, I am so glad my camellia will be okay. I'd actually kind of like to see it all variegated:)

    Dot, glad you like the bottle trees. There are some pretty creative ones out there, no question. You must have many in Alabama/Georgia too.

  31. Hey! I heard Bill speak... SOMEwhere and he was pretty funny, plus he showed a ton of great slides!