|Size||8-12' tall by 5-7' wide|
|USDA hardiness Zones||7-9|
|Sun / Shade||Full sun to part shade|
|Soil||Average garden soil|
|Moisture||Moist, but well drained|
|Disease and Pests||Some scale|
|Landscape use||Focal point, foundations, mixed borders|
|Market appeal / Uniqueness||This new hardy, fall blooming camellia is a robust grower in containers in the nursery and in the garden. It’s a full, bushy plant with a dense habit, and elegant, formal double carmine pink flowers.|
|Propagation Methods||Softwood cuttings|
|Date of Introduction||July 2012|
Susy Dirr, daughter of Dr. Michael and Bonnie Dirr was born with cystic fibrosis, which makes the act of breathing a life and death struggle. Undaunted by her disease, she was valedictorian of her high school class and an honor student at the University of GA, graduating with a degree in advertising a year ahead of her class.
Cystic fibrosis did not define Susy as a person. She embraced life with a joyful spirit that was uplifting to everyone around her. She made the world a better place with her compassion for others, her biting wit and brilliant mind. When a soul shines so bright, we see it in all things beautiful.
So, as summer fades and hints of autumn are in the air, reflections of these lovely flowers, graceful in form and with the sweet fragrance of newly opened tea, begin to fill our senses. We reflect on Susy’s life and know that a part of her spirit remains with us in the garden.
Bobby Green, the breeder of this Camellia has generously gifted his share of the proceeds from each plant to the Sweet Melissa Fund, which helps families with cystic fibrosis.
No other species has contributed more to the garden than C. hiemalis, the winter sasanqua. Attractive all year, and hardier than most of its cousins, these shrubs blend harmoniously with other textures and offer a plethora of flowers in Sept-Oct. Susy Dirr does that and more. The voluptuous, bubble-gum pink blooms put on a show stopping tribute, honoring an exquisite young woman who was the essence of all things beautiful.
Camellia hiemalis, often called the dwarf sassanqua, is the lesser known relative to the more popular Camellia sassanqua. C. hiemalis is fall blooming as well, but more cold hardy than it’s cousin. Some of these new selections have proven hardy in USDA Zone 6, but we are saying zone 7 to be safe.