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Camellias - A Hardy Hint of Romance

Camillias
Camillias

Cold hardy camellias (zone 6) easily withstand winters in Tulsa gardens, and given proper growing conditions, produce lots of radiant flowers during November and December.

The varieties of cold hardy camellias in the garden, such as Japanese camellias (bottom photo), are blooming even after hard frosts in November. Since this is a time of year when most shrubs are brown and dormant, they are a welcome addition to any garden.

The camellias thrive in dapple light beneath large trees or perform well in locations that receive direct morning light and afternoon shade such as the east side of a home.

They prefer an acidic, well-drained soil which is spaded with several inches of peat or well-rotted compost and then covered with several inches of mulch.

Beautyberry

Beautyberry

Beautyberry is a deciduous shrub noted for its brightly colored, tightly clustered berries that remain on the bush into winter. Other common names are American beautyberry and American mulberry.

Beautyberry provides food and cover for birds and deer. Small amounts are suggested for human consumption. The plant can slowly grow to 6 feet in light to no shade.

Ours winters in place just East of the barn.

Nellie Stevens Holly

Nellie Stevens Holly

Nellie Stevens Holly is fast growing and can create a privacy screen
with beautiful berries in winter.

Nellie Stevens Holly is self pollinating, but if a male holly is used as a pollinator, it can help produce more spectacular berries in greater quantity.

When blooming, the sweet smell of Nellie Stevens attracts bees and butterflies.

This plant is a fast growing evergreen that can create a privacy or screening fence with beautiful berries in winter.

You can find Nellie Stevens Hollie along the curved drive outside the fence of the Linnaeus Garden, near the barn.

Variegated Oleander

Variegated Oleander

Variegated Oleander has dark pink flowers that bloom in summer under full sun. In the fall, its flashy leaves brings drama to the garden. It is heat, drought, and salt tolerant which make it the perfect accent plant for a more aggressive climate.

Ours is grown in a large planter. We'll move it inside the barn for the winter.

Brugmansia Angel's Trumpets

Brugmansia

Brugmansia is a genus of six species of flowering plants that are known as Angel's Trumpets. Brugmansia are large shrubs or small trees, reaching heights of 3–11 m, with tan, slightly rough bark. The leaves are alternate, generally large, 10–30 cm long and 4–18 cm broad, with an entire or coarsely toothed margin, and are covered with fine hairs.

The name Angel's Trumpet refers to the large, very dramatic, pendulous trumpet-shaped flowers, up to 20 inches long and 10–35 cm across at the wide end. They are white, yellow, pink, orange or red, and have a delicate, attractive scent with light, lemony overtones, most noticeable in early evening.

Brugmansia's are easily grown in a moist, fertile, well-drained soil, in full sun to part shade, in frost-free climates. They begin to flower in mid to late spring in warm climates and continue into the fall, often continuing as late as early winter in warm conditions. In cool winters, outdoor plants need protection, but the roots are hardy and will re-sprout in April or May. Ours will be moved indoors for the winter.

Photos by Marc Schreiber and others
last updated November 22, 2014