Shrub or small tree. Branchlets hairless. Leaves to 10 cm long, elliptic, pointed, sharply toothed. Flowers mostly 3-5 cm wide, rose to white of mostly 5-6 petals. Stamens 2-3 cm long, outer ones fused for about half their length. Styles 3-parted. Fruit 3-5 cm wide.
Very similar to C. saluenensis. Hybridises readily with C. cuspidata, C. fraterna, C. japonica, C. reticulata and C. tsaii.
Variable in flower colour and size. Leaves elliptic, sharply saw-toothed. The var. yunnanica has branchlets that are often hairy and leaves lanceolate; it is similar to C. reticulata and has been hybridised extensively with it.
Source: (1997). Camellia. In: . Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 2. Flowering plants. Dicotyledons. Part 1. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.