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As a result of interest in camellias that are very cold hardy there have been a number of new camellia introductions that have been tested and proven hardy for Zone 6 plantings. Some of these require a protected location and may occasionally experience damage to flower buds during extreme cold weather. However, the plants have proven hardy after a number of years of testing at various sites in the northeast. Dr. William Ackerman of Ashton, Md., a retired U.S.D.A. plant breeder and Dr. Clifford Parks, a botanist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have introduced the varieties described below. Drawings of the forms used in the following descriptions (anemone, peony, etc) are illustrated in Good Garden Varieties.

Fall blooming camellia hybrids

These varieties are the result of crosses made by Dr. Ackerman using a very cold hardy selection of C. oleifera with C. sasanqua or C. hiemalis (fall blooming species) These varieties bloom in mid-Autumn and are quite attractive for the landscape. They have withstood winter temperatures of -10 F with little or no damage.

Polar Ice - White, 3-1/2 inch diameter, anemone form. 12 petals and 89 petaloids.

Snow Flurry - White, 3-1/2 inch diameter, peony form. 12 petals and 18 petaloids.

Winter's Beauty - Glowing shell pink with very light pink petaloids near center, 3 inch diameter, peony form. 19 petals and 7 petaloids.

Winter's Charm - Lavender pink, 3-1/2 inch diameter, peony form. 14 petals and 14 petaloids.

Winter's Dream - Pink, 3-3/4 inch inch diameter, semidouble. 15 petals and 3 petaloids.

Winter's Fire - Medium red pink, 4-1/2 inch diameter, semidouble with upright creased petals, starlike form. 12 petals.

Winter's Hope - White, 3-3/4 inch diameter semidouble. 12 petals.

Winter's Interlude - Clear pink with violet shading, 3 inch diameter, anemone form. 12 petals and 76 petaloids.

Winter's Peony - Medium to light pink, 2-1/2 inch diameter, semidouble to peony form. 36 petals and 14 petaloids.

Winter's Rose - Shell pink, 2 inch diameter, formal double. 28 petals. Slow growth and small leaves.

Winter's Star - Light red purple, 3-1/3 inch diameter, single. 6 petals.

Winter's Waterlily - White, 3-1/4 inch diameter, anemone to formal double. 21 petals and 15 petaloids.

More fall blooming camellia hybrids

Dr. Clifford Parks, his wife Kai Mei and son, David have introduced the following hybrids at their nursery in Chapel Hill, NC.

Survivor - White single flowers on a well formed, vigorous, free flowering shrub.

Mason Farm - Large white flowers tinged with pink on a vigorous shrub.

CF-21 - Large, single white flowers with pink markings. Heavy bud set blooming over a long period.

Spring blooming camellia hybrids

Also from Dr. Bill Ackerman, these introductions are hybrids of the hardy C. oleifera and C. japonica. They will do well in Zone 6B and possibly 6A (protected locations suggested). Generally will bloom in April.

Betty Sette - Medium pink, 3-1/2 inch diameter, formal double flowers.

Fire 'n Ice - Deep dark red, 4 inch diameter, semidouble to anemone with some red and white petaloids.

Ice Follies - Medium to light rose pink, 4 inch wide and 2 inch deep with 12 petals and 6 large crinkly petaloids.

Pink Icicle - Shell pink, 4-1/2 inch high peony to rose form double with rabbit ear petals.

Spring Icicle - Bright pink, 4-1/2 inch semidouble to rose form double with fluted and frilled petals.

More Spring Blooming Camellias

The Parks offer the following C. japonica cultivars for Zone 6B:

April Blush - Shell pink semidouble blooms on a compact, slow to medium growing plant.

April Dawn - Pink and White variegated formal flowers on an erect vigorous plant.

April Remembered - Large cream to pink shaded semidouble flowers on a fast growing plant.

April Rose - Rose red formal double flowers on a compact, well formed plant.

April Snow - White, rose form double flowers on a compact plant.

April Tryst - Red, anemone form flowers on a well formed plant with medium growth.

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