The Q&A Archives: Winterizing a Gardenia Shrub

Question: I recently purchased a beautiful Gardenia Jasminoides Veitchi shrub.
What should I do this fall to help it survive a Zone 4 winter and
thrive again next spring?

Answer: Your new shrub is quite frost tender so you'll want to winter it over indoors rather than try to keep it outside this winter. It requires a very humid atmosphere and very bright light indoors. A tray of water soaked pebbles can help humidify the immediate area. Aim for daytime temperatures near 70 degrees and nights at about 60 degrees. The soil should be kept evenly moist but never soggy. Do not fertilize it during the winter months while it is indoors. When you move it indoors, do so gradually over about two weeks so it has time to adjust to the reduced light levels. Start bringing yours indoors when nighttime temperatures are about 50 degrees. To avoid any surprises, check your plant over carefully for pests prior to bringing it indoors. Best of luck with your lovely plant!

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