Gardenias are waxy, white and very fragrant, seen either single or double and up to 4 inches in diameter. The Scientific Name is Gardenia jasminoides J. Ellis. It has very fragrant creamy-white flowers and glossy, dark-green leaves. However, uniform and exacting conditions are essential in growing them. The highest humidity possible should be maintained around the plants. Misting or syringing the foliage daily with room temperature water is often suggested when the plant is in bud and bloom. Although gardenias will not always develop flowers indoors, their dark green leaves make them attractive foliage plants. Bud drop is the most frequent complaint with gardenias. Some of the contributing factors are: lack of uniform or adequate soil moisture, low humidity, too warm or too cold conditions, rapid temperature fluctuations, and insufficient light. Insect pests also lower the plants’vigor.
Scientific name: Gardenia jasminoides
Common name: Gardenia
How to grow and maintain Gardenia:
Full sun to light shade, depending on the variety.
When it comes to watering your gardenia flowers, keep potting soil moist but never soggy. Don’t let water touch the flowers or they will turn brown.
Fertilize monthly with acidifying fertilizer.
Pests and Diseases:
Watch for white flies, aphids, thrips, scales and mealybugs. Diseases may include different types of fungus, root rot and bacterial problems.
To propagate the plants, take cuttings or divide the roots. When taking cuttings of this plant, make sure to cut 5 inches and at least two sets of leaves on the tip. Remove any extra leaves on the cutting and plant it in a sand and peat mixture. Cover the gardenia cutting with a plastic bag with several slits cut into it to keep humidity high. Let the gardenias cutting root for at least six weeks and keep it at about 75 degrees. Plant gardenia flowers in the balcony garden in the fall.