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Fast Facts

  • Adopted as the State Flower of Alabama in 1959
  • The Goldenrod, from 1927 to 1959, was the original state flower of Alabama.
  • Fun State Fact: The ladies of Butler County, Alabama didn’t approve of the Goldenrod; they considered it “undeserving in its role.” It was after all, a wildflower, little more than a weed, they thought. Camellias were more appropriate as a state representative and, even though it comes from China, in 1959 the Camellia replaced the Goldenrod
  • Another Fun State Fact (!): Alabama also has a State Wildflower, the oak-leaf hydrangea.
  • Botanical name: Camellia japonica
  • Alabama Flower Delivery

You’re read that right, yes! The original State flower of Alabama, the Goldenrod, is the only State flower in the United States ever to have been “replaced,” bequeathing its lot in life to the Camellia. One possible reason for this could be due to the flawed idea that Goldenrod pollen is annoying to the “allergy-prone,” when in fact, the Goldenrod is falsely blamed for reactions caused by ragweed.

The Camellia wears its crown proudly; it’s an easy-to-grow, evergreen flowering shrub with incredible austerity and breathtaking beauty. Camellias attracts botanists, horticulturists, landscapers and hobby growers alike (from all across the country) with their pretty send flowers, smooth polished leaves and exquisite form. The attractive and subtly sweet flowers on this beauty bloom from November to March, peaking in January and February. Highly valued in Japan and native to Asia, the Camellia is Alabama’s only state symbol that’s not native to the State!

Camelia by ArunaPhoto by Aruna

Camellia flowers are large and prominent with anywhere from five to nine petals. They vary in color but generally are found boasting brilliant shades of white, pink, and red (and even yellow in a few species). From Birmingham roadsides to Selma State Park and beyond, the Camellia is found blooming affluently throughout the over two-dozen State Parks of Alabama, as well as along hiking and mountain trails, highways and thoroughfares and many a southern–style garden – outdoors of course! Mobile, Alabama and the capital-city, Montgomery are no strangers to this flower’s beautiful blooms either: with rows upon rows of the blissful shrub flowering for miles, these towns aren’t simply noted for being one of the State’s largest and the capital, respectively, they’re also known as growing (and flourishing!) hubs of the State’s beloved flower!

The Camellia is cultivated quite a bit in the southern United States; the Alabama crop alone each year provides about two-thirds of the yearly “crop” for the entire Eastern part of our country! So it’s not just the south that loves this blooming beauty, you see; the rest of the country and its gardeners, flora and fauna-lovers, and growers of all types have increased the Camellia’s use and popularity significantly!

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