Botanist Lens: Cross 1, Cross 2, Cross 3!
Camellia sasanqua 'Hana Jiman' (picture courtesy: Dinny White)
Crossing plants is certainly a fine craft and more so when it comes to Camellias. London Town was extremely fortunate to have Dr. William Ackerman use London Town woodland gardens as a test site for his crosses. Seed propagation, vegetative propagation (cuttings/air-layering) has its own value but to get finer more specific traits, controlled crossing- hybridizing is the best method.
Camellia 'Pink icicle' (Camellia x williamsii 'November Pink' x Camellia oleifera) (Picture courtesy, Dinny White)
Hybridizing of species is usually done to create an enhanced variety of plant that shows finer traits than its parent plant. In agriculture, crossing is mostly done for improved yield and commercial value of a crop. Now species can be crossed within the same genus, called - interspecific hybridizing (eg. Camellia oleifera x Camellia sasanqua) or crossing can be done with two different genus- intregeneric hybridizing. For eg., some of Dr. Ackerman amazing work includes: crossing Franklinia sps. and Camellia sps.
Camellia japonica 'Herme' (Picture courtesy, Dinny White)