Stewartias, monodelpha, pseudocamellia & rostrata
I mentioned previously that I missed buying 3 good sized about 6-7 feet tall Stewartia pseudocamellias at a plant auction. In a moment of indecision the auctioneer slammed down his gavel and the plants were sold for $45 each. The lone bidder seemed determined to buy these small trees so I don't think I would have gotten them for the $50 max I was prepared to bid.
Oh well, I did the next best thing and mail ordered three different Stewartias from the Big Dipper Farms. The tiny trees arrived earlier in the fall all of about a foot to eighteen inches high. They were planted in a sheltered place next to the camellias so hopefully they will survive the winter. New buds have formed so I'm hoping they will do well.
The Stewartias have a flower that looks like a camellia thus the pseudocamellia name. They also have an attractive mottled bark that looks much like a small version of sycamores or guavas. They are native to North America and Eastern Asia. Malacodendron and ovata are N. Americans species and the monodelpha, pseudocamellia from Japan and Korea. Sinensis is native to China. I don't know where rostrata hales from but it's probably an E. Asia species. Found this info on rostrata apparently another name for S. sinensis: from the UBC Botanical Garden site S. sinensis purportedly has a scent too so that would make it a doubly attractive plant. They vary in hardiness from zones 7-10 and 6-10 so should be planted in a protected place in the yard.
Here's a U.Conn site that shows the beautiful bark. Click on the small thumbnails on the left.
S. rostrata/sinensis, has the dianthus in the background. S. pseudocamellia has the red fall leaves and S. monodelpha with no leaves.
I'm excited to see how they'll do in the Spring.