The Q&A Archives: Watering My Grafted Gardenia

Question: I just acquired a grafted gardenia(grafted onto a nematode resistant rootstock). How often should it be watered and what particular care does it require?

Answer: Whether grafted onto a vigorous pest-resistant rootstock or grown on its own roots, a gardenia has some specific growing requirements.

Growing healthy gardenia plants can be a challenge, even for seasoned gardeners. You're lucky, though, because your mild weather makes it possible to grow gardenia's outdoors. Many gardeners must winter them over indoors.

Gardenias require a rich, very acid soil (pH 4.5 to 5.0). An abundance of moisture and high humidity is the most important factor in successful gardenia culture.

Unfortunately, gardenia is often a disappointment to gardeners because it can be very, very demanding. For flower buds to form and thrive, night temperatures need to be between 60-65F. During the day, temperatures should be 70-75F. A very constant, even temperature is required or buds will drop. Bright light is essential, but avoid direct mid-day sun in the summer. Best of luck with your gardenia!

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