Why can't I get my Gardenia to grow well?

mango-princessJanuary 19, 2007

I am in California, central coastal. When I purchased my beautiful gardenia at the nursery, the instructions said it would do well in a pot. I have it in a large pot, but has never bloomed since bringing it home. The part that grows that holds the flower starts opening, then it falls to the ground. I consulted with someone else, that told me that they come from greenhouses and sold to nurseries looking pretty, so the buyer will buy one, but that it wouldn't necessarily thrive. I don't know anyone in my area that has one or has told me that they do grow well. I have only heard they are difficult to grow.

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longriver(SF Bay Area)

Califormia Central Valley is very hot and dry. The sunshine is much more than the original habitat(also hot but misty, humid and cloudy southeast of China). California Central Valley is the best place for tomatoes, peper, fruit trees, grapes, cotton, leafy vegitables----- but not quite for gardenia.

The plant may need overhead 50% shade cloth. You have to figure out how to find a high humidity area in your yard. If you have auto lawn sprinkle and bushes of nearby plants, you can place the gardenia under portion of the bush plant shade. Make sure that the potting mix is easy to drain and properly but not over fertilized.

After all that. Pray ever day.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2007 at 6:48PM
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longriver(SF Bay Area)

I am sorry in the rush. You are actually at the coastal California. Then the principle is still holding true. Coast is too cool. The plant needs hot weather. Like Seattle, gardenia will not blooming there like a Rhodi. The best place is to have a green house or a passive green house.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2007 at 7:04PM
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hopflower(z8/z15 CA Sunset)

Finding a good place for it is paramount of course; but so is misting it every day with tepid water, feeding it every three weeks, and giving it enough sun to thrive without burning it.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2007 at 1:01PM
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excellent advice above. like with all plants, try to avoid stressing as in temp/humidity changes...establish a good irrigation and feeding program works in FL.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2007 at 11:54AM
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Gardenia's need humidity and acid soil. Miracid 1/4 spoon once a month might help, or organic rose soil, you can try little cow manure also.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2007 at 4:53PM
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Here in North Georgia, the Gardenias only bloom around the beginning of June-July. That could be induced here by our colder winters - but give your plant at least til then to see if it will 'pop' (and you will know it - the scent is detectable for about 50 feet away from my plants, and overpowering right by it)

    Bookmark   January 25, 2007 at 5:16PM
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For more advice, humor, and (in)sanity when growing gardenias, check out the world-famous Suicidal Gardenia Thread below.

Great stuff!

My gardenia 'Klein's Hardy' is now suffering the deep freeze of NYC (also known as what used to be normal Feb. temperatures) despite my attempts to keep it wrapped up at night. If it survives, I'll know it's as bulletproof as they say!


Here is a link that might be useful: Suicidal Gardenias

    Bookmark   February 6, 2007 at 2:41PM
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The link below has a table that details the possible causes for bud drop off.

Here is a link that might be useful: How to Grow Gardenias

    Bookmark   February 6, 2007 at 4:30PM
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Jimshy, thank you SO much for that suicidal gardenia thread! It's SO FUNNY!!! Maybe there should be a 'gardenia support thread'.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2007 at 7:59PM
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There is a support forum, it's called your local bar . . .



    Bookmark   March 2, 2007 at 10:20AM
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Yeah, or my local crackhouse, ha ha! Maybe THEY have gardenias that bloom...


    Bookmark   March 5, 2007 at 4:14PM
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longriver(SF Bay Area)

The variety of the gardenia makes the difference about bloom. The medium and small size type gardenia will produce more flowers. The large flower( three rows of petals) produce less flowers in the East of SF area.

I had one week of most freezing temperature in my yard. To my surprise, all my gardenias including a large leaf gardenia stood well against the freezing. (I kept only one special gardenia originated from Taiwan in my warmer green house.)

I know that commercial gardenia flowers are air shipped from warm and humid Central America countries to U S.
I do think you can grow and produce nice gardenia flower in your house, but you shall figure out to develop the growing conditions favored for the plant.

I hate to tell you that I paid least attention to my gardenias and they just produce lots of flower for me. Obviously the micro environmental elements plays a key role.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2007 at 11:29PM
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