Gardenias and azzaleas - Knowledgebase Question

Novato, Ca
Question by arlhh
August 11, 2009
How do we get our gardenias to produce and maintain large blossoms? Our azzalea plants look very healthy, but there were no flowers at all this season, why?


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Answer from NGA
August 11, 2009

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The most common gardenia is the G. jasminoides or cape jasmine. It will grow in your zone 8 garden, given the proper care.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!

Azaleas develop flower buds over the summer months for the following spring's floral display. Pruning at the wrong time or a late frost can keep your azalea from flowering.

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