The Camellia Club of Mobile

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Propagating Camellias From Cutting

The Camellia Club of Mobile has held workshops on rooting camellias.  The general advice is:

  • The best time to take cuttings in mid to late summer when new growth has partially hardened.

  • Cuttings should have several leaf nodes and all but the top two or three leaves should be removed.

  • Rooting hormones and fungicides are helpful

  • .Rooting medium can be a mixture of sand and peat moss or other materials that will retain moisture, but not be wet.

  • Water to keep medium moist but not wet.

  • Keep humidity high by covering with soda bottles with bottoms removed, plastic bags, or other covering that will not block light or by misting on a timed schedule.

  • Keep plants in bright light but out of direct sunlight.  

More Elaborate Misting Systems

A misting system can be used to root a large number of camellias.  The basic system requires a short cycle timer that can be programmed to provide a 24 volt pulse for a  number of seconds every 5 or 10 minutes. The timer is connected to a control valve that will allow water to flow when it receives a pulse.  The valve is then connected to a pipe that runs to a misting head that provides the mist for the camellia cuttings.  Some way to protect the cutting from intense sunlight is provided by a structure.  Examples of this type of system are shown below.

Misting system built by Ron Driskell. The misting bed has a gravel base to prevent puddles and mud in the misting frame. Cutting are placed in flats that are placed on a bed of sand. The misting frame is covered with shade cloth. Clear plastic at the base of the frame prevents wind from disturbing the cuttings.
Misting system built by Jim Dwyer.  Frame is 3/4" PVC pipe.  Landscape fabric was used to provide sun protection on top and west side.   Flats are placed on pine bark base.
A 10-minute cycle time set to go off for 5 seconds every 5 minutes. Device on left is a filter and device on right is a 24 volt control valve.

Information on misting systems

Additional rooting information can be found at

The American Camellia Society

The International Camellia Society

Alabama Cooperative Extension Service

The Royal Horticultural Society



Page last modified 08/02/2012