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How far can I pruning Camelia?

Isle of Wight, United Kingdom Gb

We are moving to a new house next Summer and there isa gigantic Camelia in the garden which forms part of a tall hedge. It is about 8' wide! It will need cutting back, I know that you do this after flowering, but how far in could I go in without murdering the plant.

On plant Camellia




Do you know what variety it is? Can't tell from photo. When does it flower? Can you take a photo of leaves close up, that would help.

21 Nov, 2007


Sorry Spritz, I have been a dunce, I meant Camelia not Clematis. It flowers in the Spring according to the neighbours, but as I don't live there at the moment I can't be anymore specific

22 Nov, 2007


You should be able to prune pretty brutally without killing it - in fact it should even rejuvenate it. I always scare my boyfriend by pruning very hard but with a shrub like camellia you can't do much harm as long as you leave some healthy stems and buds!

22 Nov, 2007


We hard prune camellias at Standen if they are too large or encroaching on paths etc. Feel free to prune them back to within a foot of the ground if necessary. They will rejuvenate but you will obviously lose the flower buds. Often it is best to bite the bullet and hard prune as soon as you can, that way the plant can start to regrow and you can't have 2nd thoughts! You could always try to stagger the pruning by reducing the height this year and working on the width next year. Don't worry, though, as if the plant is well established, it will recover. Don't forget to check on the view that it is hiding in case you'd rather leave it at its current height.

22 Nov, 2007


Thanks to you all for your advice, it's the width that's the problem so I'll get stuck in after it flowers. I've heard that sulks for one year and doesn't flower the year after it is pruned

22 Nov, 2007


Can I prune a camelia?

11 May, 2008


Que? Springer

5 May, 2009


Volunteer, I have started pruning the Camelia in question and I am getting down to wood that has no new shoots, the inside of the shrub is completely barren with all the new growth around the outside and the top. I hope i'm not sealing its fate by cutting it down that hard. I feel really bad thinking I would like to remove the Camelia and the Rhododendron in the picture completely as they block the view up the garden from my conservatory and they are over 6ft wide. I would really like to open this area up, but the shrubs are old and mature and I'm sure a good area for wildlife.

5 May, 2009


There may not be any new shoots showing but after pruning it back hard the plant will initiate new buds and they will start to grow. It may take a few months for this to happen but the plant looks big enough to have enough energy reserves to do this. when it has grown again you can lightly trim the shoots to keep it to a height that suits you. Similarly with the Rhodo you can prune it back to rejuvenate it. You may not get flowers for a while but it will be worth it in the end. Well done!

7 May, 2009


Thanks, I'll get out there this weekend and attack the Camelia, the Rhodo has just started to flower so I'll wait for that.

7 May, 2009

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