made a big booboo on my gardenia!

meyermike_1micha(5)January 26, 2009

I think the piper blew his piper to soon!!!!!!

But the fat lady hasn't sung yet...

I learned a lesson though!!!

Remember how I said that my gardenias were doing great and no leaf yellowing. Well not soon after I said that, murphies law took affect.

Within the past week, one of my denias started to deteriate so fast, that I blinked my eyes and half the leaves fell off yellow, and even some buds and leaves, the bottom ones were wilty and soft, like dehydrated even after I watered it when the soil was DRY.

I can't be overwatering I said to myself, because I have it in Al's gritty mix that dries out rather quickly. In fact, I thought maybe it wasn't getting watered often enough, because I was letting the gritty soil dry out too much. And if I am watering, dehydration of any plant anyways always spells roots not taking up water because they are sic.

But, as I learned here, how will I know what's wrong unless I have a look at the roots. I decided, what the heck, if I might loose it anyways, I should have good look.

On examination , I found out that all but a few were rotting away!! There was just a couple of white ones poking out of the root ball in the new soil.

Then it occured to me that, in the begining days of my quest to put plants in better fast draining soil, I FORGOT to wash out the old soil from the root ball. So the new soil all round the plants root ball kept drying out, Al's mix, while the peatmoss soil on that the roots were compacted in, were never drying out!! Always staying damp.

When I stuck a wooden dowel in the root ball, it came out damp, I didn't water. When I stuck it into the gritty mix, it was dry, so I watered.

The white outside ones in the new soil were thirsting, while the ones in the compacted root ball soil, were always wet.

Only a few white roots seemed to bust of of that hard dead soil that were getting water, while the inner ones were suffocating. A classic form of death.

I can't beleive I forgot to bareroot it, before I changed it into this better soil in the begining. I wish I had known how to transplant before I learned from this webb. I am so mad!!

So I took it to the shower, and jet streamed all the rootball soil that seemed to fall away in clumps, along with all the roots that were dead and brown, till it was completely barerooted, and the only roots left behind were the white ones. I got soaked and dirty, and my water boiler broke and leaked all over my cellar at the same time.

That root mass shrunk so much, that I went from a 12 inch container to an 8 inch one with room to spare. It had hardly any roots left. I planted in the gritty mix, watered well, fed it superthrive, and will keep it out of sun for a couple of days to recoup. It seem hydrated though and firm after all that, for the first time in days. It was limp for days up till now.

I am so upset, for that was my favorite Gardenia. I hope I didn't loose it. I hope it was saved.:-(

All my other plants, after learning from the container forum, were barerooted first, thank God, then transplanted in the gritty mix, and they are so healthy. Never overwatered. But this one no. I ALMOST KILLED IT!

I guess two completely different soils in the same container is something not good that I wished I had known way in the beginning. I just didn't do this one right before I learned..:-(

Now it is in the plant hospital with the new soil. It did have a few white roots left thank god. All the top growth still looks healhty,and dark green, while all the bottom growth is gone. Long bare branches with leaves and buds towards the top.

All the branches are about 1 foot tall, with all the lowers leaves off or yellow except for for the top 4 inches of each branch, still with buds and green leaves.

Please wish it well.

Man it is amazing how FAST a plant can deteriate when once healthy!!

Sorry, I just needed a shoulder to cry on or a few. Wish I would of known all this info before I transplanted this one last year.

Thanks for listening.


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puglvr1(9b central FL)


Sorry to hear that about your gardenia. But now, you did the right thing it should do so much better. At least you saved it! I'm sure you are not the only one that didn't remove all of the old soil before repotting it( I did it also) till I learned I had to do it. I am really loving this(Al's soil mix), and of course so does my plants.

Good luck...but I'm sure it will do much better now!

    Bookmark   January 27, 2009 at 10:27PM
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They are so unforgiving -- that is the problem with these prima donnas, but we love them.

It sounds like you caught it in time, though. Good luck.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2009 at 10:39PM
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Do you all think it will make it? Man I hope so. Thanks for hoping it does. Maybe a few prayers from you all would help..:0)
It still looks ok. But more leaves have yellowed though.:-(

    Bookmark   January 28, 2009 at 6:59PM
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jeelli(5/6 CT)

Hi Mike- sorry to hear about your baby, but hopefully she'll recover! I know you've mentioned using lights on your plants- could the additional yellowing be the result of less light during the recovery process? It was just a thought...please keep posting on your poor baby's status. I just lost my grapefruit tree, so I hear ya!

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 12:56PM
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Oh man..I am so sorry about your grapefruit tree. crazy ha.
these trees, the "grapefruit" has NEVER givin me a problem over the winter. In fact my sister has one, that never sees the sun at all, all winter, growing in a corner in her kitchen, and that thing is so big and green.
That is what convinced me to get one. I figure mine would do even better with lots of sun. I love this tree.
Don't give up jeelli ok!! I got mine at "Four Winds". They sell the best...Get the "Oro Blanco". One of the best citrus you can buy for fruit and flowers that I ever had. Hardy...Probably because of a good root stock. Not sure. Sorry you lost one of your babies.:-(

I will put my denia right back in the sun and lights as soon as I get home as you suggest. I will let you know how it is doing in a week or so. I will give it time. Thanks alot.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 3:08PM
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We feel your pain, Mike, but you're doing your best, so don't give up hope! Just be careful not to give it too much light too soon, it's a very delicate balance right now with a minimal rootball and suicidal leaves. You cut back any growth that was getting soft and mushy, right?

I think it's a good sign that the top growth is healthy, but if you lost most of the roots you might consider cutting back one or two of the stems so that the plant has a balance between roots and leaves -- the leaves drop when the plant doesn't have enough water to support the leaves, which breath water out just like we do in our breath. On the other hand, more surgery might stress it out more!

Have you considered a full on grow-dance-and-prayer-circle with headdress, candles, drums and chanting? Hey, you never know what might work with 'denias!

Hope it makes it!


    Bookmark   January 31, 2009 at 2:52PM
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yellowthumb(5a Ontario)

I managed to kill my two beloved trees as well, one is a Gardenia and the other is a Myer Lemon. Lessons learns so far, never ever try to repot your tree in the dark winter up north, it doesn't matter how fast the medium drains. Unless the pot is just a little bit larger and you can have south like sun and humidity. Do it when the spring comes is a lot safer.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2009 at 12:17PM
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Oh man.
Thanks for the info!
Jimshy, I just saw your suggestions, been away for a couple of days tending to my sick family, but I will do this also A.S A.P.
My denia is loosing more and more leaves. I wish I could just put it outdoors and let nature heal it. I wish this had happened in the spring instead of now.
I am almost feeling like I am tired of worrying about my plants. Lately I have been just looking at them, and realizing how much work they are, with the watering, bug sraying, humidity,elaves falling,and yadada yadada....Then to loose one here and there, no matter what I do, how hard I try. It is so tiring. It isn't fun anymore. I am meant to live in a climate area where I can leave my plants outdoors all year and never have to worry.
what is fun about using all my energies to make evrything alright?
Then the mess they make. Then worrying about insects.
Man, I think I am giving up. I am too tired of taking care of everyone, including my plants, especially denias.I feel they are like saltwater fish tanks. One thing goes wrong with the atwer, and everything is lost. Then using all my energies..Sorry..This has been a tough couple of weeks in all aspects.
In regards to my denia, I will do the best I can.
yellowthumb, sorry about your too. At least you didn't name yourself "blackthumb"..:-)
Thanks everyone.....

    Bookmark   February 2, 2009 at 2:58PM
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jeelli(5/6 CT)

Mike- I was just feeling the exact same way. What started out as a fun hobby is turning into a nightmare of sorts. This year the stakes are higher for me (for most people, I imagine)- more, larger plants= more issues.
Is it just because this winter has been a little colder and much less sunny? Because I can't seem to keep them all happy and healthy. I feel like I'm losing ground.
We're all feeling cabin fever. Are we going to make it to spring??? aaahhhhh I can't wait to feel the warm sun on my face (yesterday was close!)

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 10:34AM
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yellowthumb(5a Ontario)

I am thinking about moving to the States, for years, especially in winter.

But Mike, I am working on the blackthumb thing, I am in yellow stage right now, if I work a bit harder, I will become black.

Yes, it's really painful to care so many sick plants, the watering and yeah the bugs, I am so sick each time I see a new mealy bug emerging from nowhere moving its fat ass around. I found this damn thing so hard to kill, I throw them into our balmy canadian great outdoors (-15C plus windchill), minutes later, it came back shocked, but ass moved again after couple of minutes, then I put it into a clear plastic bag and put it under the sun, this thing is baking, it sweated quite a bit, but came out alive, so I threw it to my microwave, I set it to high for 5 minutes, finally it burst open like a popcorn.
Am I sick? Yes I am.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 12:37PM
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Did you ever hear the phrase,"only the strong survive"?
Any plants that don't make it this winter are not going to be replaced...Right!!
I never had a fat ass on mine, but I certainly have had my fair share of skinny ass mites!! What is it with denias, why do we want them so bad even though we loose them and there a pain in the ......?
I guess we need to vent sometimes...And then a good laugh too...Let's all pray for an early spring since the stupid hog saw his shadow again....:-)

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 10:06PM
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Mike, oh my goodness! First your Gardenia, then you get soaked, and to top that off, the water heater goes out?!
You're right...Murphy's Law..When stuff like what you went through happens, it's best to grab a book and go to bed.
There's always tomorrow.
So, how's your Gardenia doing now? You started this thread, '13' days ago. Improvement, same, worse?
How many drops of ST did you use? I normally add 4, but for stressed plants, they recommend 10.

Since the majority of roots rotted, is an 8" pot appropriate? What about a 6"?
I'm not telling you how to pot, Mike, but if there's too much room between the rootball and inner pot, it might be overpotted...No?

It's 57F Gardenia is outside, getting fresh air and a tad more sun. Soon it'll be brought back inside though, in case temps drop..Crazy weather..One day it's 0F, then in the 60's!

Last summer I repotted my tree 'denia in a semi-ornamental plastic pot. As soon as it's time plants go outdoors, it's going back in a plastic growing pot. The type plants are sold in. They're lighter in weight, much easier to haul in and out. Also, I feel plants do better in growing pots.

High-humidity plants potted in pretty, painted containers, especially painted pots, peel when sitting on pebbles/water in trays.

Mike, keep us posted..I pray your plant makes it..I know how much you love your babies..

Hey Pug, how ya doing? Toni

    Bookmark   February 7, 2009 at 6:36PM
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I am so happy to hear from you! Yes, a very helpful you!

As for pests on my plants? NOTHING!!!!!!
Thankyou for all your help!

As for my denia? Not so good. I put it in a small pot as suggested from all your other informative posts,and even stuck a humidifier next to it. I can see the steam rising to the plant. I even put in in good soil, in strong sunlight. I was watering with ST until last week. That poor thing is still looking dead. Now, ALL the leaves to the top are dehydrated, limp and turning black. I am so upset about it. I was staring at it last night for quite a bit. I was debating on tossing it out? Then I was saying no, I think I will see what is does still. No, I will toss it out and make room for another sun loving plant. No I will toss it out! Man. Lol.

I have several plumeria I want to take out of hiding right now, that would love that sunny spot and start to grow. But I am still holding out hope for it. We will see..

It must be nice to get a few warmer temps. I still have yet to reach 40 degrees around here toni.


You said that you stick it out for a while in the sun then bring it back in. Can this movement of your denia put it into a shock from enviromental change. From indoors to outdoors, then indoors? If not, I would love to give my denias outdoor air and sun, just as soon as the weather allows me to.

I have missed you. You have been a very HELPFUL member here. We can all take a bits of info from each other here, even though some may disagree with someone elses ideas.
Heck, when I use my tool box for fixing my things around here, I don't use only ONE tool to fix something, I use them all. They all serve a purpose. Each has a significant value. Imagine a tool box without a wrench?
So thanks for being part of my tool box toni.


    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 4:37PM
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Hi MM! I hope your gardenia survives for you! You may want to sacrifice a few plants to the Gardenia God just to be on the safe side. I find the GG likes philodendron plants for some reason.

I know how you feel, my belmont aka Gary has tiny flower buds on it. I made the mistake of talking on the phone to my mom stupidly TELLING her in front of the PLANT that it has buds on it!! I tried to whisper, but that damn green menace has super hearing.

Later that week the leaves started to turn yellow! Some, not all, so I fiddled with some stuff and gave it some weak fertilizer and it seems to be coming back to life. I shouldn't say that too loud.

I'd post pictures, but my batteries are dead.

I hope your plant survives and thrives! I didn't know that tip about getting the old soil out of the root ball before transplanting.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 6:05PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Hey Toni!! Nice to see ya!!

Hi Mike and everyone else!!

Mike, keeping fingers crossed your gardenia makes it!!

Toni, I want you to check out my "new" Plant acquisition!!

I will post it in this forum(new thread) and a couple of pictures...This is a new plant for me, I fell in love with it when I saw a few pictures here and on the net, LOL...I know you have one of these?

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 6:10PM
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Waht's up puglvrl and mersiepoo???

Nice to hear from you too!!!

Thanks pugvr1, and don't start mersiepoo!LOLOLOL

Glad you are all well..:-)

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 6:48PM
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Hey Mike, Pug and Merci....I hope you're all doing well.

Mike, you are SO right. Over the years, well, since 2002 from Day 1 regestering here on GW, I have learned so much reading over threads.
Including and discovering I wasn't the only plant-a-holic on But seriously, talking to people, hearing different views, and browsing everyone's gorgeous plant pics is something I looked and look forward to, when turning on the puter.
I have learned a lot and hopefully helped some people with their plants, but for the record, I do not consider myself an expert, (mostly directed to the person who wrote saying he/she was writing a news-gardening column, asking my location) but a hobbyist who has grown indoor plants since my teen years.

Mike, don't toss your gardenia. Not yet anyway..If you're 100% posititve it doesn't have insects, and it appears it doesn't, give it more time.
With spring coming, it should soon sprout baby leaves. Would you say more than half dropped, more, less? Give it to us straight, doc, what percentage fell? :)

Did you ever read the Suicide Gardenia thread? It's hilarious. Every so often, when I can locate it, (thanks to Pug, I found it a couple months back) realize how true/realistic the author was when they wrote it. Not to mention all the others who chimed in, in agreement.
Gardenia's are not the easiest plants to grow..After reading numerous Gardenia posts, there are people in Beautiful FL and CA who have problems keeping theirs alive, so think what people who reside in cold, dry, gray climates must/have to do to keep a Gardenia thriving.

Mike, are its stems flexable or break when you bend?
Hopefully, they bend..if they bend w/o breaking, the plant is alive..Have you tried scraping a little bark off different sections? To see if it's green or brown/beige?
Is this gardenia a tree or bush? Do you have others? If so, how are they doing?

As for its medium, it's growing in an entirely soil-less mix, right? If so, (I'm not trying to talk you into changing, or degrading anyone's recepie) IMO, some plants do fine in soil-less mixes, but others need Soil. It goes by different names, garden soil, (NOT soil used in gardens) house plant soil, black soil.
Black soil contains nutrients. Please don't ask the chemistry of black soil; I am not a chemist, nor do I have an answer. All I know is it works.
Black/house plant soil has been around many, many years, potted in, directly, without amendments, yet, people managed to keep plants alive, from generation through generation. Now that we know some black soils are too heavy to use without adding an amendment, we can find and buy, Perlite, bark and sand.
Anyway, the point is, I believe Gardenias should be planted using a small percentage of black soil. For us who live in the midwest, or up east, anywhere winters are cold and dry, as much as we don't like it, most plants DO go dormant. There might be some growth, but little..I'm not saying all plants take a nap...right now my hibiscus, especially a tree hib, has bloomed non-stop the entire winter, citrus are fruiting.. there are others too, but I won't go into detail.
Which also leads to fertilizing. Gardenias need a short rest, therefore, fertilizers should be withheld. A two-month period is about right, DEPENDING on where one lives. To fertilize a dormant plant is forcing it to grow, and more often than not, growth is spindly. Additional, arificial light helps to a degree, but isn't that going against nature? Why force a plant that, when grown in its native habitat, sleeps a spell?
Obviously, we all know the reason nureries/florists force blooms, to make money, sell plants for Mother's Day, Sweetest Day, etc.
I just think fertilizing adds too much stress on a Gardenia. Let nature take its course.

Mike you asked if I felt taking my 'denia outdoors now would stress it..Well, so far, so good, cross my fingers,'s 60.8F degrees..the coolest it got last night was 54. Nope, I don't think any harm will be done. Unfortunately, tonight it comes in..We're supposed to get snow, big snow, tomorrow..sigh..oh well, it was worth a A little break.
Mine too has lost some leaves. It lives in the back plant room..when temps were 0F almost a full month, cold air was seeping in..NEW WINDOWS! Because I got lazy, didn't rotate, the leaves hitting the windy got somewhat frosted. So, I got out the pruners, and clipped..After clipping one side, decided the other three need

So Mike, please give your gardenia a chance before discarding. I don't know how dry/wet its soil stays, but it should dry a little..although Gardenia flowers last longer when temps are cool, maybe you should keep in a tad warmer..65-67F??? If it were my plant, I'd mist daily, espeically if your house is dry.
Oh, which reminds me, don't let the stream of humidity hit the foliage..the air will cause leaves to brown. The same with heat and a/c...
Keep us posted....good luck...

Pug, what do you want me to see? Please send the link..Hugs, Toni

    Bookmark   February 10, 2009 at 2:06PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Hi Mersiepoo!! You must have been posting about the same time as me, I didn't see your post till I posted mine! Glad to see you!! Hope all is well!!

Toni, I just posted a new thread on the fragrant forum(this one) "My Early Valentine's Gift...Stephanotis"
Check it out!

Here is a link that might be useful: My New Stephanotis Floribunda

    Bookmark   February 10, 2009 at 7:14PM
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Hi everyone!

Good to see you all here. I love it! :-)


Do you remember when you kept saying that you never want to talk about your denias around them, well I am really starting to believe you. I swear they want to rebel, just as soon as you say they are doing well.
I am about to start having sleepless nights from nightmares from this one.

I swear mine saw me post that they are all doing so good with no yellowing leaves. Why, within the next few days from that, they starting falling and dying on this one. Never again. Those evil things!

There is a post on the houseplant forum about growing " majesty palm trees" in our area. Most agree there, that they are throw away plants from home depot, that they start dying the minute you bring them in at fall time. HUM..LOl


I am writing this to you far away, in a seperate room with the door shut so my gross looking plant won't here me....
I just checked it today, and some of the branches still had green, But some of the branched were also completely dead. Brown, shriveled, and dried out. I would say that about 80 percent of the leaves are gone, and the rest are wilted, looking dehydrated. A very plae limp green. I hope it makes it....
I have just removed the humdifyer from under it, and I will follow through on some of your other suggestions..:-)

I have a few questions though. How much sun do your plants that require sun get, as in about how many hours?
Do you use grow lights, and if not, are your denias getting only winter sun?
How big are your windows?
What temps do you keep your tropicals at, especially denias?
Thanks toni.
I hope everyone here continues to enjoy this forum, and has great sucess at their denias...By the way, what a RIOT that suicide denia thread is!!

Oh GOD, wait, I thought I saw my denia spying on me....I gotta go!!!!!!!

    Bookmark   February 10, 2009 at 10:08PM
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Hi MM,

Uh oh, I forgot to tell you those gardenias can levitate at will!! Oh nooooo!!! Try this: Throw yourself on the floor in front of it, swear you won't talk about it to anyone else ever again! Oh wait, never mind, they can't read. I forgot. Ok, you should be all right then. :)

Ha, my stupid gardenia, I started fertilizing it lightly, keeping the soil acidic by adding some vinegar like Puglvr had suggested in one of her posts. I did this after I saw 3 leaves turn !!!yellow!!!! I also turned on a grow light, well it's actually one of those flourescent type squiggly bulbs that don't generate heat. I turn that on a few days. I also gave it some chealeated iron with trace minerals. Now, this #$!#! plant is really screwing with my head. It's got one stem (same one where a few leaves turned yellow!) but the others are green. However, there are a few older leaves that are turning a slighter shade of green. Very slight! I'm hoping that using the very dilute algoflash will keep them from turning yellow.

And, the *(#$@#@$!!@$OU%#@$#GRR!$$#@# plant has tiny buds on it! I KNOW it's TOYING WITH ME...It's going to WAIT until the buds are bigger and then DROP THEM..GAAAH!! I HATE YOU YOU STUPID PLANT!!!! ARRGH!! YOU #@$#$#@#!!!!!!!!!

Ok, I feel much better now. When I want to cheer myself up before I go insane, I read that suicidal gardenia thread...misery loves company!!!

Hey, for some encouragement, I do have to tell ya, when my other gardenia died, it was almost completely dead. I didn't fertilize it at all, which is why it died, but it started putting out a new leaf and then kicked the bucket when I started HOPING it would come back to life. So, don't let it sense your hope, lol!

    Bookmark   February 13, 2009 at 7:57PM
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You guys are'm sitting here, reading this thread, LMAO.
Can you guys imagine a newbie, reading about Suicide threads, and paranoid spying plants hiding in the doorway, listening to a keyboard conversation??? ROFL Hehehe..

If its stems are green, It's seriously, let it be, don't overwater, and keep a tad cooler in winter, away from heat..they dote on humidity, but need fresh air too. If placed in a dry, stuffy location, insects can attack..
Many authors recommend grouping plants, as a sort of green-house atmosphere..It works, but when plants are set close together, for one, those that need high light are blocked by taller or plants nearest the windows. Also, air feels stuffy since there isn't any flow. Unless a ceiling fan is running above, air would be stale..
And, like grade-school children, if one gets sick they all do..with plants, we have to worry about insects and disease, not sneezing.

Mike, for sun-lovers, plants get whatever God allows IL to During winter, high-light plants go directly in windows. South, west and southwest. Especially C&S's..Two plant lights are set in two different rooms, but only aim at small-mid sized plants. Taller plants, over 3', are on their own.
Artificial lighting makes a difference..Gro light (bulbs) are great but pricy. One warm and one cool white bulbs work fine.
So, Mike, as for the amount of sun high-light plants get, it depends how much sun there is outside..On cloudy days, ultra violet rays pass through clouds. So, even though we don't see a shadow, plants still get light.
Did you ever spend the day outside when cloudy? Your body will tan, the same applies to plants.

How big are our windows:, amounts and sizes, were one reason we chose this house. Front plant rooms windows face south..They pretty much surround the entire room. Back room windows have picture windows..Facing east and south..Kitchen, 2 north. LR, 3 about 5x3'. Upstairs, Bathroom, 1 west-facing picture window, bedroom, 2 south-facing windows. Halway, faces east, low light..3 dracaenas live in this window.

Temps vary. Mostly 55-70 depending on outside temp and sun. Before getting new windows installed, the back plant room, some nights, dropped down to 23F. Horribly cold..My poor plants were cold. Too cold..insulation needs redoing in both rooms.

I moved my tree Gardenia from the front to back plant room. It's airer and more humid in front. Remember it was outside? I hauled it in, and left it..if ever temps rise to 60's, outside it's going, and nope, I don't feel it'll go in

Again, HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY..Got myself some nice Valentine plants. Whooppee !! luv ya all, Toni

    Bookmark   February 14, 2009 at 4:31PM
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Crazy toni!!

Do you know that I spend days looking at other peoples homes enveying their big windows. I keep telling my self, "If I was buying a new home, that's the one I want" Then when I see houses with tiny windows, I say, "Thank God I don't live there".Lol.

I hauled at least 9 of my choicest plants to work recently, because my Boss said it was fine. I owe him big time!! I have them all in ceiling to floor windows getting sun from sunrise to sunset...Oh, unbelievable how fast they improve once they are put there...
Just today, I brought one of my favorite Gardenias there, and stuck it in a tall corner window,with the warm sun shining on it. I swore I could here it yelling "THANKYOU"!
For once I could here my denia talking insteaed of me talking to it!

You are so fortunate to have that much light. No wonder you have over 1000 plants...Or maybe a little less? lol

I did what you said about caring for my sick one. The only thing left on this poor sick one is the buds. Every leaf has dried up, and fell off. It even has some branches that just snap with no life. Keeping my fingers crossed. It must sense I love him or her...

As you can tell, I feel completely comfortable talking about them today, because I am typing this to you, from work. They can't hear a thing now! Therefore, the long post response...

Mersiepoo, you should do same!!LOLOLOLOL

I am having a great time with you all. There is some light in life, just when you think all is dark most of the time lately.
You have all been an inspiration to me, and lift me uppers.

I love you all, even though I have never seen your faces, but I can read your hearts... If our denias did same, maybe they would grow and make our lives a bit easier ha?

Take care for now.... I will keep you posted.


    Bookmark   February 15, 2009 at 2:34PM
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jeelli(5/6 CT)

Mike- you'll laugh- it took us a year to find the right home, because I refused to live in a house with the wrong exposure! (And without enough windows! our "old" house had western facing sliders in the kitchen- nice, but not enough room)
Our "new" house has a sunroom/ family room addition- facing East in the front, South along the longest wall, and West along the back. SOLD! Lots of windows, that the previous owners kept covered! Needless to say, the room is fully utilized!

    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 10:55AM
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I wonder how many here have done the same thing?

I could never understand why people have such big windows, and then never let the sun in, with big fat thick curtains that act like walls covering them....

In fact, when my parents moved in, my mom wanted to buy curtains for mine. 1/2 inch drapery cotton ones that didn't even let light in!! She put those on my windows while I was at work one day, and, they came right down when I got home I'll tell It was a choice between keeping her happy, or my
I have to fight with my dad everyday to lift the blinds so the sun can shine on my plants too in another room. He says it gets to bright in there...Unbeleivable..hey are not plant lovers..Can you tell?

Does it seem to you that the old timers were use to covering up their windows in the old days..?
How many people were into grow lights, big sunny windows, and plants like we are today,except for the local nursery? Have you noticed that the average new homes are being built with much BIGGER windows..I wish I could afford one of those.

Anyway, I took a good look at my denia this am, I don't know. It looks so dead. But per idea's here, I am still going to let it sit in it's nice warm resting place..Sounds about right, resting place... We'll see what the higher angle sun does for it.


Nice...Way to go. You must love your house, and look forward to watching the sun come in each day, resting on your "healthy" plants, right?:-)
Feel the sun getting stronger?:-)


    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 11:36AM
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I think that some plants, those known as "difficult" or "challenging", just up and die for no discernable reason. Over many years I have noticed that experienced plant lovers learn to take this in stride. It's the nature of the beast you are dealing with and not anything you did or didn't do, necessarily.

After growing plants for a while, you also realize that the initial investment in a plant seems small compared to the time and expense of caring for it. In that case, if you love a plant and have the right conditions for growing it, buy another one and try again. You know that you will have at least some pleasure in owning it, at least for a time, whatever happens in the future.

PS. My two (generic) gardenias are now blooming -- one flower on each bush. I never had luck with the named cultivars, but who knows, maybe this year I'll spring for one.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 12:33PM
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Hi everybuddy,

Thanks for the Happy Valentine day wishes Toni! I'm glad you got some wonderful valentine plants! I hope they grow like the mighty oak for you! :) Wow, you have a gardenia tree? You must be a wizard, do you use magic to keep it alive? ;D

Awwww...thanks Mike! (blushing) Shucks, that makes me feel so happy that I can make you feel better about your levitating mind reading gardenia! :D You have a wonderful way with words amigo! :) Remember, don't let your plants get to you, hee hee!

I know what ya mean about not enough windows! Our old house didn't have any at all in the basement, and very few in the house, except we lived in a valley so it didn't matter anyway. Now we have 2 french doors and a big picture window that faces south! Woohoo! I don't have curtains on it either. I wish the whole south face of the house was glass, that would be awesome! :)

Well, think positive, at least you still have buds on, so it's possible it will come back for you. I hope it does, mine is just punishing me for talking to my ma about it, so if I don't say ANYTHING on the phone, maybe it'll forget!

Monarda, congrats on getting some BUDS and FLOWERS! I'm in awe!! What did you do to convince your plants to flower??

    Bookmark   February 16, 2009 at 7:36PM
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All my friends here need to know, that my prettiest gardenia, "Tina", the one described upbove has passed on to a far betetr life!! :-(

The announcement is as follows.

You are all invited to her ulogies starting at 8 o'clock in th am tommorrw, at the "Walter Parish" church here in Lowell, Mass.
Soon after that there will be a procession leading to the grave site where she will be carefully been placed in a far better soil than she was in before. "Organic mind you! The process will take you up my driveway, along the brook, up to the maple tree that she has always enjoyed sitting next to all summer. She wanted to be buried next to that tree if she should pass on. So she will be.

Don't feel bad. At least she was baptized with me in her last shower with me, and repented of all her sins. So now she will be a far better place where she will no longer have to struggle in this sad harsh world and enviroment up here in the north.

No more spidermites, no more faucet water, no more douses of iron, no more hearing my voice, no more showering with me, and no more dropping her leaves do to what I think she thought was abuse at my own hands. No more suffereing!

May she rest in peace tommorrow. If any of you can not make it, I'll understand. Also, any contributions to the "Take Good Care of Your Gardenia" foundation would be much appreciated. That would be addressed to me... Even better, maybe another tree gardenia shipped to my home, in sympathy, would take the pain away from me, mend my broken heart, fil the lonliness in my other plants who so much miss her,as we have been crying all day....:-(

Thanks for all the support you all gave me all this time, but, she will be a much better place now, and have fun in "planty heaven". At least she won't feel the chill outside tonight as she waits to get buried...

Love you all, and I hope I can move on now.:-(


    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 3:24PM
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I will try to remember to take a picture of her so I can post it, and you can all be part of an open casket viewing... I will show you before and after pictures in her rememberence...:-)

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 3:29PM
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Please accept my condolences, Mike!! You know, after I gave my gardenia a shower, it started to go down hill from there. I think I washed out all the nutrients from the soil when I did that!

Should we send flowers for the funeral??

:( Sorry for your loss!! :( I hope that you can find a great replacement soon that will bloom for you.

I hope that mine at least blooms once before it dies, the leaves are starting to turn yellow, I had fertilized it lightly with iron, and do you know that they are still turning yellow, and some of the 'new' growth at the base of the plant the leaf tips of the new growth is burned.

I'm going to GO CRAZY WITH GRIEF, ha ha ha ha haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Sorry about Tina, amigo! I know if my gardenia dies, it will go to HELL..ha ha ha!!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 5:42PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Sorry Mike :o(

Thanks for making us a part of your grieving and memorial ceremonies...the only thing that will heal your pain
is to get another one, LOL...or maybe try a
"Stephanotis Floribunda"...I just very recently
discovered this very pretty plant. DH gave me one for
Valentine's Day...I love it! Hope it blooms for me!

We say goodbye to one gardenia...and say hello to another

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 8:10PM
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jeelli(5/6 CT)

Oh Mike- I'm so sorry for your loss! That stinks! But you know what? Monarda is right! I guess you win some and you lose some. It's the challenge that makes it "fun."
My beautiful Gardenia (unnamed variety) from Whole Foods looks ratty. The leaves look like there may be some root rot. I had checked before and everything looked okay, but I am going to investigate further. She was doing so well- kind of draping herself over the edges of the least I have some photos.
Yes- we love our new house. I have a daily morning ritual of raising up the stubborn roman shades the previous owners left us, moving smaller plants to the window sills. At night I cover up the windows for the sake of energy efficiency, and privacy- the room is on the side of our house.
But yes- that sun she's shining warmer. ahhhh

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 12:11PM
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Here a picture of the poor plant before I buried it...

Roots and plants.:-(

Thanks everyone...

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 12:45PM
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    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 12:55PM
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OMG..what gruesome pictures..AUGH!! It's like a horror movie with blood and gore everywhere! =:O

Your poor, poor plant!! :( Sniff, sniff, I am so sorry, it was so beautiful! Well let's hope it goes to gardenia heaven, if there is such a place. :( I'll make a donation the the Arbor Day Foundation in her memory.

I tell you, you will think I am crazy (well you probably KNOW I'm crazy already). BUT. I keep my plant in a big tub, and let it soak up a little bit of water that is always there for humidity control. I'm not going to take showers with it anymore, because 1) I think I horrified it so much with me unclothed that it took awhile to get over the shock) and 2) it leached any nutrients out of the soil.

Ok. If my plants lower leaves are turning yellow, then it needs a little fertilizer. If you give it too much, then the new leaves that are coming out will turn black or have black tips on them (muffled scream).

If your plant has leaves on the top only and looks like a 'palm tree gardenia', then it's been growing too dry and needs more watering.

For some reason, my schizoid gardenia actually seems to grow better when the soil is constantly moist! Yes, isn't that contradictory?? Yes, it is. But, anytime that I have let it dry out, it started doing worse and worse. I do grow it in a clay pot however.

When I have a little bit of water in the bottom, it seems to do well. I don't have a lot, and I do let the water evaporate every few days, and then add some more. Sometimes like maybe 1 time every 2 weeks I totally give it a good soaking with some very dilute fertilizer (algoflash) and a titch of liquid iron. If I give it too much iron, the new leaves seem to turn black. Oh yeah, and I also give it a half teaspoon of vinegar with watering every month or so. You can also just use an old tea bag too, to keep the soil acidic.

For some reason, this has been working for me for the past 2 weeks. I don't know why, lol!

If the leaves are green and dry and falling off, that is definitely that the plant isn't getting enough water.

I actually just used miracle gro potting soil to grow it in last year, and it seems to like it.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2009 at 8:43PM
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snasxs(7-8 VA)

I am not surprised.

You are the person who showered your root-rotting gardenia and claimed victory!

This is the definite result.

Now you know why I was so concerned.

Humidity is NOT an issue (the root is), get it?

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 1:15PM
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Snasxs...he's in mourning. His dead gardenia hasn't even been planted for a week yet.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 6:33PM
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snasxs(7-8 VA)

I am mourning for the Gardenia, the lost love, the wasted money and energy ... ...

    Bookmark   March 6, 2009 at 12:09AM
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Hi meyermike,
I'm so sorry to hear about the big girl! At least you didn't kill her on purpose [like I did with mine!] I could post identicle pics, only the leaves blackened! lol] My plant never looked better last fall,[Sept] then for whatever reason, I brought it in, and gave it a good fert.! all the while, back of the brain, knowing better! It was a long process, but finally,in the trash she went.
I do not consider this whole exsperiance a waste. For almost two years, I had the JOY of the shiney leaves, and those Heavenly flowers! Its a learning exsperiance, and I fully intend to get anouther![maybe a tad smaller!
Again,sad to hear you lost one, but don't forget the ones out there, waiting to be loved!
Good growing, Fiona

    Bookmark   March 6, 2009 at 1:46PM
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jeelli(5/6 CT)

Snaxs, I think it's up to Mike to worry about his time and money, esp. when he has bigger fish to fry these days.
Half the fun and the challenge for us northerners is learning by trial and error. If something didn't work, then it's up to Mike to make adjustments. I love my plants too, but it's not like he killed a pet!
(Family is #1, pets #2, plants #3)

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 12:45PM
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Jeelli, you are 300 percent correct! :D Although depending on the family members (for me anyway), the order can be a little different, ha ha! :D

Everyone makes mistakes, ESPECIALLY with gardenias. Heck, all I have to do is breathe on mine and they turn black! I have that affect on all my plants though. ;D

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 7:56PM
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jeelli(5/6 CT)

Mersie you are too funny!

I love my boys, but today once again our dog gets the gold star for best behaved- and she's a Boxer!!!

The only Gardenias I have going for me are the wacky varieties from (you guessed it) Logee's, and an unnamed "bush" from a small greenhouse. The Veitchii's are for the birds (or compost heap) and yet I bought ANOTHER one from the grocery store. I guess there's something about being a glutton for punishment!

Why? Why do we do this to ourselves? Why set up for failure? For what? The hope for one, just one fragrant flower? Why? Why I ask!!

Oh yeah- cause my kids don't need me so much (outside of taxi service and to buy/ pay for things and make sure to shower and feed them and tuck them in at night...) and I need to fill my time buying weird plants that on the off chance may someday produce flowers that smell good. Oh yeah. And to make my husband crazy, like his X-Box makes me crazy. There you go. rotflmao!

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 10:23PM
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Hi everyone!!

Ok I got the courage to come back....:-)

You are all making me laugh.
That is what I love about coming here.
You are all good people!
Thanks for caring!

Our denias on the other hand?..Hummmmm

Do you really care to know what happened "snasxs"?

Or anyone else...?


    Bookmark   March 16, 2009 at 5:40PM
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jeelli(5/6 CT)

Mike you need to stick with THIS forum!

    Bookmark   March 16, 2009 at 9:21PM
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Mike, did you toss your Gardenia?
I stared at your pic 2 mins, looking for new growth.
In a way it looks like fertilizer burn, but possibly something else. Did you fertilize a lot? Toni

    Bookmark   March 17, 2009 at 3:05PM
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Hi everyone!!


This was a true case of a plant that self destructed over a time, from transplanting it incorrectlty into new soil from the beginning.

My plant died from having too much air around and through out the root ball. If I had filled in the roots thoruoghly with the new soil, the poor thing would of never thirst to death every other day...
The showers were the only thing that gave this plant a break.
Am I the only one that makes these stupid mistakes with plants...? :-( :-(

Thanks for caring so much everyone..

Hope you are all fine tonight.


    Bookmark   March 17, 2009 at 9:52PM
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Now you all know that I killed TWO plants.. I couldn't hold back anymore...Where else can I go to admit a stupid mistake twice. This last post I described is in reference to yes, a different one I lost shortly after losing the first one that started this post!!

So from my two mistakes, I hope you learned to make sure to clear the old soil away correctly as in the first one, then to make sure you fill in new soil correctly around one that you bareroot, or you'll lose two..:-(

So neither one of my babies died from overwatering, but from incorrect transplanting.:-( :-(

Now goodnight! I feel better now that the guilt has been lifted off my shoulders!! See, maybe our denias are not that evil anymore, maybe it could be the other way around...

    Bookmark   March 17, 2009 at 10:12PM
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I know they always warn you about overwatering, but I find I find that I lose more plants to letting them dry out inadvertently than to overwatering. (My 2 cents). You have to watch these darn things like a hawk.

I have found that a bit of warm, verging on hot water sometimes helps to moisten the rootball better when I have let things get too dry. When they get to a certain point of dryness they just won't accept new water -- it runs right off. And I know it isn't kosher, but in the heat of summer the plants that seem to do best (outdoors) are the ones that have a bit of water in the saucer at all times. When they are growing well they are thirsty devils.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2009 at 10:43AM
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After a while, watering is no different than breathing. It comes naturally, we get a feel or a sense, hey, wake up, it's time to give 'x' plant a drink.
Sometimes, people hear that little voice way too often.

Watering depends on soil, or soil-less, room temps, humidity or lack of and pot materials.
If one is using a completely soil-less mix, it's natural plant is going to need more water and fertilizer than a plant potted in soil.
If room is hot, soil dries out faster than cooler rooms.

Some people ask why I use soil instead of 100% soil-less. Well, the answer is, soil is something I'm familiar with, so going completely soil-less would be like starting from scratch.
Don't get me wrong, depending on the plant, I add peat, perlite, etc, but most plants are potted in some soil. Since soil is heavier, a plant needs less water.

Mike, were the two plants you lost in soil or soil-less?

    Bookmark   March 18, 2009 at 12:17PM
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Right, then once the roots dried do to a lack of enough soil around the roots, or soil to compacted around the other, they got stressed over and over again, until they just shut down. Then the rot.., because they couldn't take up water anymore on their overly dried roots..Their root system basically died before they even drank.
Another cause for rot.

I have had this happen to cactus and clivias. I have held off on watering far to long on a couple, then when I finally decided to water, the roots just sat in that water and rotted. My clivia turned yellow, and my cactus heeled over!
I guess we can kill roots before they even ever get a chance to drink from drought.:-(
And when they finally do get water, they just turn to mush.
I guess this is a big reason why they say not to let denias overly dry out, but to keep them evenly moist.
The same could happen to my ferns too.
How was my poor plant able to drink without soil completely covering its root sytem, especially the inside of the root ball in which I completely shook all the dirt out?

These did not die from overwatering or the soilless mix I used, but the way I handled the root sytem when transplanting. I have no one to blame but my own stupidity!
:-((. SO I have realized that there are many factors to root rot, especially to denias..

Toni, HI!!
They were both lost in a soilless mix..
You see, I was loosing plants at one time in a soil mix to overwaterting. That is why I went soiless.

This time I lost them, due to a lack of experience transplanting them into an entirely different soil mix..

If I had transplanted them correctly, I would of never have lost them . While it is true that it is almost impossible to overwater in the mix I have them in now, it is a BIGGER possiblity to kill them if the soil I use is not in contact with all the roots after a barerooting and to drought.
Especially with big air pockets, voiding the roots of soil in the center of the root ball. I should of used a stick to push the soil deep into the center of the roots.

I sure did learn from all of this though, the hard way.

Lesson: 1 If I don't break the old root ball up enough for the roots to take hold of the new soil, then I will kill yet another..
Lesson: 2 If I don't fill in all roots with new soil correctly, including the the rootball, after barerooting, so that these roots have contact with soil, then I will kill another.

Is anyone confused yet? Does everyone see what I mean?
I think I might of helped someone here....;-)
It is hard to explain, but I gave it my best shot.

Sorry so long,but I enjoy your company everyone. Thanks for a listening ear!


The only time any of my both denias, and yes, a couple of my meyers from the same mistake, got a good watering,when all the roots got a good drink, even with soil was to dry to permeate, or when the soil was not surrounding roots, is when they got a shower. This is why these two babies were wilting every other day until I did gave a shower! When I stopped due to someones advice, they died very quickly......:-)They just asumed I was overwatering my plants, instead of the latter. But they meant well..:-)
They were wilting from drought from a diferent cause!

Thankyou everyone....

And Toni, a special thanks on one of my other posts!!! I will explain later..

Love you all,


    Bookmark   March 18, 2009 at 1:07PM
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Monarda, you are SO right! Anytime I have had problems with my stupid gardenia (well, more problems than usual, that is), it was when I would let them get dry. They would start getting yellow leaves almost overnight, I swear.

Mike, hey don't be too hard on yourself buddy, everyone kills plants. I still think that gardenias are evil though, lol! Mine has one big fat bud on it, just waiting to turn black and fall off if it even senses that I have any hope that it will bloom. :D

You guys are right about air around the roots not being a good thing. My stupid plant is losing it's lower leaves, they are just turning yellow and dropping. It's not iron chlorosis. So, I took it out of the pot (it's in a big pot for its size). The roots are a healthy white and not crowded in the least, but I noticed that I had balled up a bunch of newspaper in the bottom of the pot, and some of the roots were trying to root into the paper. HA! So, I took out the paper and added some soil to the bottom and put the denia back in. I did this a few days ago, and hopefully it'll come back. Strange thing is, there is new growth at the base of the plant, so I guess I'm not totally killing the dreadful thing yet.

So, you are all right on the money about not letting any air (or newspaper)into the soil at all. :)

    Bookmark   March 22, 2009 at 5:15PM
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Mike, I am totally confused about your soil problem. lol. What do you mean soil didn't cover the rootball?
Is this something that happens when a plant is potted in complete, soil-less mix?
I can't fathom how this happened.

Mike, when you use soil-less mediums, it's imperative to water more. That's one reason I refuse to go soil-less. One reason. I don't have time to water daily.. it'd take a week, then when I finished, it'd be time to start over, rewater. lol. The soil my plants are in dry fast as it is, so I can't imagine potting in something that dries even faster.

Since your mix doesn't include black soil, check first, but you will have to water more than say me..Good luck. lol
It also depends on size of pot..the larger the pot, more water. Some containers need 2-3 gallons. My Manderin orange is in a 24" plastic summer it takes 4 gallons of water for a full soaking. It's potted in soil! I don't know how muchw water it'd need in non-soil medium.

Mike, for many many years, people potted in nothing but what they could find at their nearest nursery..heavy, black soil. No perlite, sand, peat, etc. Yet plants survived. It's a matter of aquainting yourself when to water.

I'm sorry you lost your gardenias though..Are you certain they died? Sometimes leaves fall, but once outdoors, baby leaves resume. Toni

    Bookmark   March 22, 2009 at 5:55PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)


Check out this gardenia that they sell at this website. I've never ordered from this company before, so I can't vouche for them...but they supposedly have a "frost free", "disease and bug" resistant variety...might just be what you may be looking for? "If" their claim is really true?

Hi Toni **waving hands** might want to see this one too.

Here is a link that might be useful: Frost Proof Gardenia

    Bookmark   March 22, 2009 at 8:41PM
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Wow merciepoo, WOW!! I

Everyone, when I get a year, I will explain what I meant by what not covering the rootball and bore you all to death with the long story...

Toni, I will definately explain what I mean to you later.

Just to let you know that I can grow gardenias "in anything less than an 8 inch pot, here's the proof. I took pictures last week in my yard with the first day into the 60's...I have a few other smaller ones, but no larger ones anymore..:-(
Can't wait till the grass turns green

An extra...My ponderosa giving me fruit!

    Bookmark   March 23, 2009 at 9:59AM
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What do you think? Is there such a thing as "freeze proof" gardenia for my area...?lol

That is one nice plant. If I were you, I would be planting one in my backyard quicker than you can blink an eye...That is one nice plant! I think this is where toni orders alot of her plants?
Imagine the fragrance walking into a yard with that one.
Really nice..

Enjoy your weather!! I wish I was there. It is only in the 20's right now..When is this going to end?

    Bookmark   March 23, 2009 at 10:06AM
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Merci, where did the newspaper come from? Was your 'denia purchased with newspaper? The poor roots were probably seeking soil, asking, 'where are you, where are you???' lol. Don't give up. If it's producing growth, your plant is alive.

Pug, thanks for the site..but we're in zone 5, not 6.. the GArdenia is hardy to zones 6 and up. Also I checked The company has negative feedback..If you get a chance, take a look-see. More negs than positive. I WISH we could grow Gardenias outside, yr round.
One fragrant, hardy perrenial, Mock Orange is hardy to our smells heavenly. A couple yrs back we went to a nature garden. They have a deeply, variegated Mock Orange. Not only was it sweetly fragranced, but the leaves were gorgeous. So much variegation. I've been trying to locate one, but they're hard to find, especially Mock variegated.

Mike, are plants pictured those bought at Logees? They're huge, 100 times larger than those ordered via mail. From Logees..
They're beautiful. The gardenia and citrus are so, very nice, healthy, dark green leaves. You did great! I wish we lived near'd be one heck of a drive going there. lol. Toni

    Bookmark   March 23, 2009 at 12:10PM
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Hi toni and everyone else!

The citrus were purchased at Logees. I have been able to keep them alive all this time. The ponderosa in particular are very rapid growing.They also seem more resiliant to pests..the best part of all!! lol

I have had it for about 3 years now.

The denia was bought at a local nursery last fall. That baby gets the sunniest window in the room, with a plastic bag over it, to keep it clean and bug free from my other plants, along with a self contained humid enviroment. I don't close the bag completely so it can't breathe though. I treat this one like gold. It seems to be working for it for its first winter.
Having a bag over it though, amoungst the others, doesn't look that nice. But if it is helping it to stay alive, who cares, right?
I just wish the others would of done just as good without plastic over their heads....
Hey, maybe merciepoo should threaten hers with putting plastic bags over their heads, and then telling them that she'll seal the bags if they don't perform well. Lol

You seeing this merciepoo..?

I never transplanted this one from the original pot either. Maybe once I do, its bye bye?

We'll see.

Take care:-)

    Bookmark   March 23, 2009 at 7:10PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Beautiful Gardenia and Ponderosa Citrus Mike!! Congrats on your success!! You know all those blooms that I had on my Meyer Lemon? Almost all of it fell off after the bees were all swarming around it...I'll be lucky if I can find one or two that set fruit out of it? Oh well...back to getting free lemons from the neighbor's, LOL... You know we can't win them all...we all have lost a few plants here and there. I will say that I am losing a lot less than I used to once I starting using the faster draining soil(Al's Mix). So for me its worked out well. I know that everyone has their own preference on the soil that they want to use...and I am okay with that! I say grow it whichever way works the best for you and your lifestyle!

Toni, I'm glad you looked on garden I said I have never ordered from them before, just caught my eye on that frost free gardenia...Oh well!!

Hi Mersiepoo!! How's everything growing for you? Hope all is well in the gardenia/plant world!!

    Bookmark   March 23, 2009 at 9:57PM
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Mike, I thought you bought both plants on your last visit to Logess..didn't you go there last weekend?
What did you end up getting? You didn't walk out empty-handed, did you? OMG!!! lol
Hey, if the bag works, so be it, right? Do you keep the plastic on in summer? It'd get too hot, especially outdoors. Overheat, etc..

Hey Pug..I'm with you on the soil..whatever works, then by God, use it. How many people filter water from their aquariums, 'fish poop,' to water plants. Works great! Not much different than FE, less expensive, in fact, free. lol

Pug, thanks for the was thoughtful of you to think of us poor souls in cold climates who can't grow Gardenias outdoors in winter..
I have two Phlox plants, one white, one lilac color, at least I think they're Phlox. They smell sooo good..Stargazer lily's are fragrant too..scents up the block.
One nursery I shop at sells what the owner calls, 'hardy orchids.' Hardy to z4-5 and up.
I ordered a few last year, and was dumb..they were too small to set in the garden. I should have overwintered them in the gh, (if that worked) then planted this year. Some are very frangrant.
One was so small my dh thought it was a weed and plucked!!! I was not a happy camper by no means. Bozo! lol
Some require a ton of water, others need dry soil.
I was going to reorder these 'orchids,' but I might need surgery so will hold off. I already contacted the owner and told him I wasn't going to buy the hardy orchids afterall. We'll see what happens.
I'm now into fragrant and variegated plants..both in and outdoors.
I dont know how many times I walked around the house thinking, if I was to sell a plant which would it be? Guess what, came up with 0. lol..
Every plant has special meaning. How can I possibly give up any one plant? My sister rents space in a huge lot every summer. Ppl bring their tables and chairs and sell stuff. It's like a huge yard sale. I thought it'd be a great place to sell plants..Right! I can't do it. It might be a good place to sell cuttings though..hmm..Toni

    Bookmark   March 24, 2009 at 1:22PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Hey Toni,

I do really feel for you guys that have to bring your plants inside for the winter. We also have to do it occasionally, during the few days of freeze and or hurricane, LOL...well you can't win them all!! No matter
where you live there will be life's unexpected weather related issues, right?

Funny story on your DH plucking the orchid thinking its a weed, LOL...I'm sure you weren't laughing at the time he did it though?

The problem with selling some of your plants...all you're going to do with the money is just buy "different Plants", so I guess its kind of counter productive,lol...but if you have some that you're not too happy with, sell those, then get some you really like. But it sounds like, you don't want to part with any of the ones you have. You'll just have to knock down a wall and enlarge your!

Sorry to hear about your surgery...hope it's nothing serious, please take care!

    Bookmark   March 24, 2009 at 4:38PM
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Pug, guess it's up to the individual where they live..Some people love the fact, 90% of the people I talk to 'online' prefer winter to summer.
One forum had a discussion 'moving to a warm climate.' Most agreed they'd miss our 4 seasons, snow, and native plants.
I didn't join the chat, I'd have been

No, I didn't think it'd funny when hubby plucked the orchid.

Pug, selling older plants for new was the idea..Like I said, fragrant and variegated. There are a good number of sellers on Ebay, from HI and Thailand who sell gorgoues plants. Come warmer weather, I plan on ordering a few variegated Adeniums. Those bought in winter died. It was just too cold, -4F, and shipping took a long time.
Pug, don't know if I mentioned this to you, but last summer I gave most of my Philos to a friend. Never thought I'd do it, but did..
Thanks about the surgery..Toni

    Bookmark   March 24, 2009 at 7:17PM
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Hi everyone!

Toni, no I didn't get the gardenia there at Logees!

Are you kidding. They don't sell anything larger than a 4 inch pot there. In fact, I saw a most beautiful 4inch pot fully flowered denia that had a sign on it.."NOT FOR SALE".
Why the heck run a buisness if you can't even sell a plant to a customer who has been shopping there for years to make money? I really wanted it! I don't get it.
I left it there and ended up buying a couple small 2 inch denias.. Then a ruby red grapefruit in a 2 inch pot, and another lemon meyer in a 2 inch pot.
You know I can't drive all the way down there and leave empty
I even take orders from friends and pick them up plants too...
How dumb do you think I am? lol duoble lolol
Of course the plastic bag comes off as soon as I can put it outside.....Maybe merciepoo would threaten hers with suffocation, but not

Take care everyone, to sick to continue.

I hope you are all well..:-)

    Bookmark   March 25, 2009 at 7:24PM
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Mike, are you still sick? What's wrong? You better see a doctor.

I thought Logee's sold larger plants at their greenhouse. I once read a thread where a group of women spent an afternoon at Logees. One woman said, she left with both hands filled. I 'assumed' buying directly from their gh, differed from plants shipped out..

Do you know if your new citrus is grafted? 2" pots? You're kidding? Wow..
I used to order from Logees, frequently, in the 90's..At the time, their plants were shipped in 4" pots, good sized. Even though they looked nothing like those in their catalog, one figured, with care, plants would one day look similar.
Their shipping was always on the high side, but nothing like nowadays.
Around 2000, they started shipping plants in 2-2 1/2" pots, and increase prices..
I continued ordering, (less often) but 90% of the time, these little, tiny, almost-rootless plants died.
One variegated lemon stood 2" tall, died within days. The last plant I ordered was Acalypha, Copperleaf. One dead Copperleaf. I don't remember how it started, but someone from customer service phoned. She was a sweetheart. I explained the situation..She apologized, and sent a good-sized Copperleaf. It stood about a foot..Now why didn't they ship out a similar sizes in the first place.
When the replacement plant arrived, I was baffled by its beauty..the only problem was, it was loaded w/mites..that was the last time order from Logees. 2001/2.

Copperleaf is sold here in spring as an annual..1.50 at Walmart..I bought one a few years's alive and well.

Mike, I wish you luck with your new plants. And get to a doctor, please..Toni

    Bookmark   March 26, 2009 at 3:52PM
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Hi guys!

Mike, I hope you are okay, you have been sick for a looong time! Maybe those gardenias of yours are trying to poison you. I've heard stories.... Seriously, I hope you go to a competent doctor or ND to find out what is wrong. :( Don't let the plants get the best of you!
I can't believe that Logees wouldn't sell you a gardenia that was blooming..was it reserved for someone else? Geez Louise!

Another logees plant I had just bit the dust, it was an easy care one too, a strawberry guava! The lemon guava seeds I had planted and grown are doing great! So why did theirs die? Hmmph, who knows. :( I'm still battling the spider mites that I got from that company. >:(

My gardenia is still alive, it seems to be losing less leaves since I removed the paper and added soil to the bottom of the pot. I was daring and gave it a tiny bit of epsom salts in the water. I just bottom water it now, since it seems to hate any other watering method.

Pug, I am sooo jealous of you and your beautiful plants! I'm also so happy for you that you can grow these tempermental beauties! :D

Toni, I hope that you are doing well, I didn't know you had surgery, or else I would have sent you my best wishes! So, here they are (a little late), best wishes for a complete recovery! :)

I think these plants are conspiring to do us in..the only reason Pug isn't sick is because she has her plants outside, lol! ;)

    Bookmark   March 26, 2009 at 4:27PM
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Don't feel so bad everyone......

I have had over 20 Logees plants die on me
I only have about 4 original ones from the begining. My ponderosas, and one bourvardia.
Toni, the ponderosa is a true cutting. Not on a root stock.
Are all your meyers you have on root stock?
I bought one from Logees a few weeks ago, a true cutting, let's see if this one survives this time..

And yet there is still something I love about going to Logees..It is a special place! I could spend all day in there..Just set me up a bed there, and I could live there until spring....That place is so warm!!

I am going to call and speak to the owner tommorrow, and ask why they wouldn't sell me that 4 inch pot one. I fell in love with it. It has 4 big beautiful blossoms on it and it was in a hanging pot. It was so nice. I couldn't believe they didn't want to sell it to me after I have invested so much money into that place.... They said it was there to advertise the 2inch pot ones and what it could look like if ones can get them to grow that big... SURE....We'll see...

Still too sick to say anything much further, after I just finished my last gasp on the houseplant forum. I missed you merciepoo. I wish you well toni. And puglvr1, well, you can keep Florida with all its sunshine and denias, lol :-)

Thanks for all your concern everyone...

Love you all!

    Bookmark   March 26, 2009 at 7:58PM
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Mersi, which nursery, 'did you buy' mites from? :) + :( But seriously, was it Logees?

Is Logees owned by different people, (in the last 10 yrs?) Logees was my favorite place to shop, locate those hard-to-find rarities. Plants were insect-free and decent sized.
They still send catalogs. For the life of me I can't figure it out.. :)

Thanks Mersi, actually surgery is this coming Tues, Mar 31. I am soooo scared. One out of 3..sheesh.

Mike, so are you saying Logees doesn't sell grafted citrus? If that's the case, another point against them.
Mike, all my citrus are grafted. The only non-grafted tree was one started from lemon seeds..It was very pretty, but thorny as a Cactus. Ironically, its leaves were lemon scented, something I don't detect in nursery-bought grafted lemon trees..strange.

Mike, don't be surprised if they won't sell the 4" Gardenia. Many nurseries keep a plant for display purposes.
A local nursery had the biggest, most Beautiful Variegated PonyTail Palm ever. Not common variegated with stripes. This tree has long leaves with yellow circles. It was absolutely beautiful. On the bottom were 4 offshoots. I asked the owner how much it cost..he joked saying, you'd need to take out a second He had many offers from other nursery owners all over the US, but he refused to sell. He got hold of this tree in the 40's..they tried rooting offshoots, but they either died or grew in green. I wanted to try one SOOO bad.
Anyway, we stopped at this nursery in Feb. The owner is in his 70's or 80's and has since lost interest. The PT was thrown in with other tall plants, all crunched together. Its ends were brown, soil so dry it cracked..I don't see any easy way to repot since it's been in the same 32" container for years. It looked terrible. I asked a clerk why the owner didn't have it on display, she said he lost interest. It's ashame seeing such a beauty smashed with other trees.
Sometimes, when plants have disease or pests, they place a Not For Sale sign. But in your case, I think they're keeping the Gardenia as a model, an example of what another 'denia will look like.
It sure doesn't hurt to call. I hope they agree to sell. If for some reason they owner declines, try not to be disappointed. Keep us posted..Toni

    Bookmark   March 29, 2009 at 6:09PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Hi guys,

Mersie, so glad to hear from you...I'll try and post some pictures of my gardenia when I get more blooms. Believe me, I've had my share of yellow leaves/pests also. I think they just come with the territory, gardenias and bugs...tom and jerry, peanut butter and jelly...well you guys get the picture, lol. Glad your denia is still alive(I have faith in you). This is one plant that you can't blink and not have something go wrong...

Mike, please feel better soon...let us know if they sell you the plant!

Toni, good luck with your surgery...will be thinking of you.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2009 at 7:51PM
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Thanks Pug..Can't wait until, Toni

    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 6:06PM
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Hi everyone!

MM, I hope you are feeling better! The pics of your plants are stunning, you really can grow those gardenias! The ponderosa lemons are nice looking too..I love the scent of citrus flowers. :) What kind of gardenias are they? Where did you get them?? Beautiful!! :)

Toni, I hope the surgery went well and you are recuperating as fast as possible! Hope all is well with you, hey you better get better soon and sniff those gardenias, lol!!

Hi Pug, glad you are doing well, thank you for the! Well, to make a long story short, I was in a not so happy mood a few days ago. I had had to move the plant because I needed the tub for my new chicks that I got. So, basically this move accelerated the yellow leaf drop exponentially. ALL the leaves fell off, except for the one big bud. I was not happy..not happy at all, and the gardenia met with an unfortunate accident. It somehow was thrown off the back deck and plummeted to it's death about 15 feet below. The police have already been here to take pictures of the crime scene. So tragic, no?

So, I'm in the market for another gardenia, ha ha ha!! I got the cursed plant from Logees. And yes, that is where I got 1) spider mites, 2) thrips and 3 some sort of leaf spot that only attacks succulent plants. It's now on all my succulents, except for my Christmas cactus for some reason has escaped it. I noticed in the photos of logee's epiphytes that if you look closely you can see the spots in some of their catalog pictures.

Yeah, they still send me catalogs..but I am no longer tempted as their prices are outrageous! I only have 3 plants from them, one fig, the epiphyte (night blooming cereus), a sad looking blood orange (it's alive, barely but I have a key lime purchased from a cheapo company (maybe burgess) that is doing great and has survived for 3 years with me, ditto a meyer lemon I got from them and it's still alive too!)...oh what else..hmmm...well I guess that is about it! I have other plants that are still alive and doing well.

I had just read that its not good to use vinegar on gardenias, someone said that it is used as an herbicide. Maybe that was the problem? That and giving it a shower, which leached the nutrients out of the soil.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 6:51PM
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Hey merciepoo!!!!!!

Welcome back...
Remember when I first started on these forums, and I was looking for help with pests?
That is at the same time when I started getting plants from Logees, and never gave it a thought!!!
My God, what if I did get them from there? I AHVE BEEN GOING THERE EVERY MONTH for the past year!!! OH MY GOD!!
What the heck am I suppose to do. Also, the only plants I ever have from them that keep growing are just a couple. So many have died, and I keep going there to replace the ones that I loved..Mayde I am on a merry-go-round and need to get off........OH BOY!!!!
Please, is there anyone here that has had sucess and great plants from Logees? Anyone?
Yes I am gettting better. Even I was to sick to come here.
By the way, I got that denia last fall from a local nursery. I have been afraid to transplant it. I have even been afraid to take the plastic off from it all winter, for fear I might stir up the gardenia demons. God forbid allow another spot for any mites to hitch a ride on my only clean, bug free, plant!
I am writing fast because I have to leave here at work in two minutes to head home.
I wanted to say hi, and hi to all of you.
Toni I hope your surgery is going ok. And I hope you don't let it get you down,because of being limited in what you can do for now...I am so sorry.
Take care everyone, and please excuse any spelling errors!! I goof up when I am writing slow, let alone fast.
Stay healthy and happy everyone.
Thanks fo all you do for me in my sucess with the hardest plant to care for, yet the most fragrant that we all really wish we could

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 7:57PM
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Mercipoo, thanks..I'm better..been working on plants.. had to go back yesterday, more tests! so we'll see.

Anyway, you tricked me. I was in awe with your story about, what I thought was human or pet, fall 15 stories. THE crime scene. I thought tragedy struck. You are a clown, a good clown, funny but a clown. You sure you're not a commedian? lol
Now about the that a joke or did you really adopt chick-chicks? Little fuzzy birds that don't fly, walk around saying, pluck pluck If it's true, how cute. Are they Easter birds??? lol.

Mike, back in the mid 90's, Logees sold very healthy and rare plants. Never did they ship 'plants w/their insects' like they've been doing since 2000.
Ohh, did they give in, sell the Gardenia?
Let's see, plants bought at Logees. Spotted begonia and a Blue Dawn Morning Glory, (evergreen.) I think that's it. A Scillia might have come from Logees, can't recall.

Hope you were poking-fun about feeling blue last night..part of your mystery, building suspense.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 10:26PM
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Hi everyone!

Pug, I can't wait till you post your pictures!!! I live vicariously through anyone who can grow and flower gardenias!! :D I'm already stalking the internet for my next gardenia....victim...heh heh heh.

Toni, I'm glad to see you back online! I hope that you feel better and better every day! :) One thing that I am taking (and so is my hubby) is kombucha. This stuff is like your own home grown medicine cabinet! I am hoping that it will clear up the floating spots I have in my eyeballs. My husband says that he can notice improvement in his health already, and he's only been drinking it for about a week now. It's cheap to make too, and doesn't taste bad, sort of like a combination of apple cider and champagne. It's been around for hundreds of years. :) Look up kombucha mushroom. I got my culture from kombuchausa. If you want more detailed info, let me know. :)

Mike, glad to hear you are feeling better too! I wonder if these gardenias are trying to do us in! You never know.....

LOL, Toni! Actually the gardenia was thrown off the deck, it was 15 feet approximately to the ground. It had it coming, you know. I knew it was messing with my head, and waiting for me to see the bud getting ready to open! I foiled its diabolical plan!!! HA HA HA!! Now it can't torture me anymore.

Actually, I did buy peeps, here are some pictures of them.

:) Notice they are in the plastic bin that the gardenia used to inhabit? Not anymore..HA HA HA!! I will get another doggone plant...I will! And, this one will bloom, or else it'll DIE!! I will TELL IT as soon as I get it that it BETTER BLOOM or else! I'll show it where it will end up if it doesn't bloom its little green head off.

RIP, poor little guy didn't live very long. :(

    Bookmark   April 14, 2009 at 6:28PM
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I will trade you a chick for one of my denias!!!!

They are the cutest things. I almost bought some just for the fresh eggs since I eat them alot!!

I love them....That is gardenias and chicks....

Give me your address if you want and I will send you a hardened off surviver denia from the winter actually doing great and not possesd by the devil..ok

A denia that actually loves showers and being talked too. In fact, mine actualy seem to respond well to classical music and

Hi toni and pug, monarda,Jeelli which you are missed,jimshy, yellowthumb, and snasxs, I hope you are all happy and doing well!!


    Bookmark   April 14, 2009 at 11:20PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Mersie, those are absolutely ADORABLE!! I wish I could have some of those in my backyard!! They are soooo sweet!!

BTW, I posted some pics of my gardenias on another thread, if you care to see...Thanks for those great pics!!

    Bookmark   April 16, 2009 at 12:46PM
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When we got the house here in az it had 3 gardenias in the front walkway. 2 on the east wall and 1 on the west. I love gardenias for their fragrance. The 2 on the east wall walkway were not that great looking when we bought the home and I would imagine that they are part of the original landscaping so could've been close to 15 yrs old in '09. I got all of them to bloom somewhat after the first year but since then the 2 just got really spindly and finally last fall I yanked them out. I couldn't even get to the entire rootball of one of them but that's okay because I have this ground over vine that produces a small white flower that soon covered the area. I forgot you could grow these in zone 6. Maybe I'll put one in the ground or in a pot outside one of the bldgs in bklyn.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2012 at 6:41PM
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