Camellia sasanqua ‘Susy Dirr’ PPAF

Beautiful blooms put on a show stopping tribute

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
Bloom Time September–October

Angela and Linda’s Garden Notes:


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. 

For Gardeners

Camellia sasanqua  is fall blooming as well, but often more cold hardy than it’s cousins.  Some of these new selections have proven hardy in USDA Zone 6, but we are saying zone 7 to be safe.  As summer fades and the nights begin to cool, the October Magic™ Series usher in the camellia season in beautiful fashion. Graceful in form and one of the loveliest of autumn flowers, the soft fragrance of sasanquas conjure up memories of southern gardens amass with blooms. These new selections offer all of the nuances we’ve grown to love in sasanquas and then some. There’s a shape, size and color to fit any garden.

For Growers

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.