70th Annual Camellia Show and Festival!

70th Annual Camellia Show and Festival!

Saturday, January 16th, 2016!
One of the oldest flower shows in the state of Florida.
Free and Open to the public – Mead Botanical Garden

If you love camellias, Mead Botanical Garden is the place to be… especially on Saturday, January 16, 2016. That’s when the Camellia Society of Central Florida will host its annual Camellia Show at the Winter Park Garden Club in the heart of Mead Garden.


You won’t want to miss the hundreds upon hundreds of blossoms on display in the show or the incredible array of bushes blooming in Mead Garden.

The Camellia Society invites anyone who wishes to enter the show to bring their entries to the Garden Club clubhouse between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. on Saturday, January 16, 2016. For exhibition rules, visit http://www.americancamellias.org/assets/CSCF_Horticultural_Schedule_2014.jpg. For more information, call (407) 886-7917 or visit www.camelliacfl.com

2016 Activity Schedule

7am – 10 a.m. Enter camellia blooms (ANYONE)! Volunteers available to assist with registration. (Location: Winter Park Garden Club Clubhouse, located in Mead Botanical Garden)

10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Camellias for sale with other plants, merchandise and food. (Location: Outside Clubhouse)

10 a.m. – 11 a.m. Camellia 101 Class – Robert Bowden, director of the City of Orlando’s Harry P. Leu Gardens with Bonnie Satterthwaite from The Espoma Company (Location: Barn)

11 a.m. – 4 p.m. Self Guided Tours (Locations: Camellia Garden, Legacy Garden, Greenhouse & other areas throughout Mead)

1 p.m. – 4 p.m. Camellia Show officially OPENS to public. See thousands of competition blooms up close! (Location: Winter Park Garden Club Clubhouse)

4 p.m. Camellia Show and Festival closes





Espoma logo



Sount Seminole Farm and Nursery





Jerry Conrad, who passed away in January 2013, was an important figure in the world of camellias. He was not only a renowned Central Florida camellia grower, but he also was the driving force for development and propagation of camellias throughout the U.S. His nursery, Erinon Nursery in Plymouth, grew over 600 varieties of camellias.

Ben George of the Central Florida Camellia Society has donated a beautiful collection of bushes for the Jerry Conrad Memorial Garden.

You can also see many of Jerry’s camellia bushes in the camellia garden located near the Denning Drive entrance to the Garden. Mead Garden was the recipient of over 350 of Jerry’s camellia bushes, a gift from Jerry’s brother, Russ. MBG Inc. is very grateful for this incredible gift.

We are also grateful to the volunteers from the Camellia Society of Central Florida, garden volunteers and the Winter Park City staff who carefully planted hundreds of bushes in 2013.

This wonderful donation joins an already large collection of camellias donated by the Galloway family in the 1960s. Many of these plants are over 10 feet tall. The collection includes Camellia japonica, Camellia susanqua, and Camellia sinensis. We know you will enjoy exploring the beautiful camellia garden located adjacent to the greenhouse.

The camellia is an ancient plant that grows wild in Southern China and Southeast Asian forests. About 5,000 years ago, the Chinese harvested the plants from the forests and began cultivating them for the beauty of their flowers; as well, the leaves of the camellia bush were dried and steeped to make tea. Camellias were discovered by Westerners in the 1600s and brought to Holland and England. They grow well in dappled sun or shade under oaks and pines as they like acidic soil and a good amount of water.

Camellia japonica is the most popular of the camellias in the U.S. It was introduced in the U.S. in the early 1800s. It can grow to over 20 feet in height in Florida over a long period of time, as it is a slow grower. There are about 3,000 varieties of Camellia japonica currently cultivated. Many are the large, showy blossoms prized by camellia lovers.

Camellia susanqua is prized for its lower, wider growth habit, and is frequently used in foundation planting or hedges.

Camellia sinensis is cultivated in China and Southeast Asia for tea. Although it can grow to about 10 feet in height, typically it is kept pruned to about three feet for easy harvesting. These plants can be seen along the fence on the Denning Drive side of the Garden where they will be allowed to grow to their full height.