gardenias in pot planters - Knowledgebase Question

Chandler, Ar
Question by kkbenedum
October 18, 2010
I have 2 gardenias in identical planters potted at the same time, about 1-2 months ago, and in the same manner. They are on the front covered patio. One is doing fine. About a week ago, the other ones leaves started to dry up and turn brown and brittle. What is wrong with it and what can be done to save it?


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Answer from NGA
October 18, 2010

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If the plants are getting the same exposure to the sun, I think the ailing one is showing symptoms of water stress; specifically overwatering. Roots can suffocate when the soil remains soggy. I'd unpot the sick plant and check the root system. If you find mushy roots, cut them away from the plant. Break a couple of the small roots while you're at it. Healthy roots are creamy white inside; dead or dying roots are brown, black or rusty colored. You can repot the plant in fresh potting soil and prune away the dead and dying foliage. Your gardenia should perk right up once you correct the problem with the roots.

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