Camellia • Camellia • ツバキ • 椿 • tsubaki
This camellia sasanqua is listed in Area C as 6′ in size, having support pole; it appears somewhat smaller; but Hiroko confirms that ‘it is growing rather horizontally, and it probably is 6 feet high if it is straight up’. The magenta flower color and time of blooming (late fall) further confirms this camellia identity, even that we don’t know more than it’s a sasanqua.
General info on c. sasanqua from Backyard Gardener: Camellia sasanqua ( Sasanqua Camellia ) – This evergreen upright shrub or small tree has dark green oval leaves that are generally smaller than those of Camellia japonica. Flowers too are smaller, often single and fragrant. More tolerant of sun and wind than Camellia japonica, the sasanqua flowers from late summer until early winter depending on the cultivar. […]
From wikipedia on Camellia sasanqua history and uses: […] At the beginning of the Edo period, cultivars of Camellia sasanqua began appearing; the first record of the cultivars of this plant was made by Ihei Ito (1695–1733). In Japan, it is not considered to be a true Camellia as the Japanese call it Sazanka (サザンカ, 山茶花).
C. sasanqua was not known in western societies until 1869 when Dutch traders imported some specimens into Europe. It is now also introduced to Australia and the United States.
It has a long history of cultivation in Japan for practical rather than decorative reasons. The leaves are used to make tea while the seeds or nuts are used to make tea seed oil, which is used for lighting, lubrication, cooking and cosmetic purposes. Tea oil has a higher calorific content than any other edible oil available naturally in Japan. […]