When Should You Trim Camellia Bushes?

Updated February 21, 2017

Camellias are beautiful flowers available in reds, purples, pinks and white. Camellia bushes are hardy evergreens and their easy care makes them a good choice for the beginning gardener. You do need to prune and shape them for optimal loveliness.


Although horticulturists have developed some hybrids for better cold hardiness and other hybrids for increased sun tolerance, most of the 20,000 varieties evolved naturally, according to the Alabama Cooperative Extension.


Camellias grow in southern gardens, in zones 7 through 9, but make excellent container plants in colder regions. Plant your camellia when the weather is cold but not freezing.


Camellia bushes do not grow to a uniform size and shape. The branches grow haphazardly and the bush, if not trimmed, would not have an attractive shape.

Time Frame

Trim the branches after the bush has stopped blossoming. If your cultivar is part of the japonica species, then it will flower in the spring. Sasanqua cultivars bloom during the autumn.


If you want to save the seeds of your camellias, harvest them in October. They are not fertile until they reach full maturity in the autumn.

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About the Author

Diane Perez is a writer who contributes to various websites, specializing in gardening and business topics, and creates sales copy for private clients. Perez holds a Bachelor of Science in education from the University of Miami.