gardenia - Knowledgebase Question

spanish Fort, Al
Question by almatenorio
October 18, 2009
my gardenia was bought in June of 2009 and it is not growing and seems to have white spots (Maybe eggs) on the underside of the leaves. The top part of the leaves is being coated with a black substance. I want to know what to do about the plant can u provide me with a name to cure the plant? Or should I send it back to where I bought it? Forget about camalia in my life.

Answer from NGA
October 18, 2009


It sounds to me as though your gardenia has an insect infestation. When you find a black substance on the tops of the leaves that you can easily wipe off or scrape off with your fingernail, it indicates insects such as aphids, mealybugs or scale insects are feeding on the stems and leaves above. They exude a sticky substance called honeydew when they feed and this honeydew turns into something called sooty mold. Once you get rid of the insects, the sooty mold can be rinsed off and it will not reappear. You can spray the insects with insecticidal soap. Repeat applications may be necessary to kill any new insects that may hatch from eggs. Be sure to follow label directions. Best wishes with your gardenia!

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