Gardenia - Knowledgebase Question

Foster City, Ca
Avatar for amillie1994
Question by amillie1994
December 27, 2005
Had heard all the challenges about growing Gardenia. I live in the San Francisco bayarea and had gardenia grown in two different spots of the back yard. One in a container under the roof line (facing south) by the house and the other rooted in the soil (facing east)adjacent to some shady plants. The one in the container had buds that were never blossom while the one in the soil never budded. They get fertilize every 6 weeks and water every two to three days. Do they require heavier fertilization or if they need heavier watering cycle? There had been times where white filming would be found on leaves (container) but at the same time, they disappeared once the rain start to drop. Lastly, if the blossoming issues had to do with humidity and warmth, should they be wrapped under plastic during the colder seasons? Thank you.

Answer from NGA
December 27, 2005
Gardenias have some very specific growing needs and if these are not met they will refuse to open their flower buds. 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 or fail to open. Bright light is essential, but avoid direct mid-day sun in the summer or the leaves might scorch. Keep the soil moist at all times except winter when watering should be reduced. Mist the leaves frequently, and repot every 2-3 years. Don't wrap your plants with plastic - that will only impede good air circulation which can lead to fungal diseases. Hope this information answers all your questions. Good luck with your gardenias!

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