Will my gardenias recover?

modlins5(z6 OK)April 4, 2006

I think I made a big boo-boo! Last year we bought two lovely gardenia bushes. We planted them in pretty pots in the front yard. They did ok, except the buds kept falling off just before they would bloom. Only a small few actually bloomed. This past fall, I was afraid to leave them out for the winter because we had planted one in the ground the year before, and it didn't make it. So, I repotted them and brought them in. The leaves all fell off, but a couple of months ago, they started getting new leaves. This week, I moved them back outside and fed them. The leaves were only on the tops of the branches for the most part. Now, some of them are turning yellow. They look so sad. Did I ruin them? Should I have just let them over-winter outside? Will they recover??

~Carrie

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jimshy

Gardenias will drop leaves if they experience a shock, which moving from inside to outside usually is, particularly if the night temps are colder than what they were used to.

Don't panic! As long as the roots are healthy, they should continue making new leaves. Just don't overwater them while they don't have leaves, keep the soil evenly moist, and DON'T fertilize any more -- gardenias don't like heavy fertilizing unless they're large and well-established, and more fert right now will only shock them more.

BTW, no gardenia will survive a z6 winter in a pot, so you did the right thing to bring them in for the winter.

Good luck!

Jim

    Bookmark   April 5, 2006 at 3:21PM
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