Camellia Plants

Camellia Foliage

Anonymous added on February 20, 2014 | Answered

I have very large elderly camellias in my garden which have been a delight for many years. Three plants growing next to each other are are about 10 feet tall and 8 feet wide. The foliage on two of them is completely covered with a deposit which looks like soot. My local plant center tells me to wipe this off each leaf - totally impossible with such mature shrubs! Can you suggest any treatment or will I have to get someone to dig them out and dispose of them? I do not want this problem to spread to other camellias, especially the ones which I grew from seed.

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on February 20, 2014

This is called sooty mold, which more often than not is brought about by some type of pest, like aphid or mealy bug. I would recommend neem oil. We have found it to be very effective against these kinds of pests and will also help treat the sooty mold. These articles will explain more:,

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