How to grow Great Gardenias
Grown for the fragrant flowers, as well as the attractive glossy foliage, Gardenia varieties vary more than simply by name.
Gardenias available in Australia vary in height, as well as flower colour and size or growth habit.
Flowers vary in colour from pure white to creamy white to the yellow of Gardenia augusta ‘Golden Magic’.
The flowers also vary from large double types to the small single flowers of Gardenia jasminoides ‘Star’.
Gardenia Radicans is perhaps the lowest growing type, reaching only around .5 of a metre in height. Gardenia magnifica will reach up to 2 metres depending on conditions.
Some of the smaller growing types are well suited to growing in pots or containers.
You can also find Gardenias that have been trained as standards and the make wonderful specimen plants in containers.
List of Gardenia Varieties
Florida – Gardenia augusta ‘Florida’
Radicans – Gardenia jasminoides ‘Radicans’
Magnifica – Gardenia jasminoides ‘Magnifica’
Professor Pucci – Gardenia jasminoides ‘Professor Pucci’
Star – Gardenia jasminoides ‘Star’
Aimee Yoshiba – Gardenia augusta ‘Aimee Yoshiba’
Four Season – Gardenia augusta ‘Four Seasons’
Golden Magic – Gardenia augusta ‘Golden Magic’
Ocean Pearl – Gardenia augusta ‘Ocean Pearl’
Gardenias are a versatile landscaping plant, from low growing border plants, to hedges through to feature plants, standards, and potted specimens.
Basic Gardenia Care
All Gardenia varieties need warmth to thrive, this does not mean full sun. The cooler the climate, the more sun they will require. However a position out of the hot afternoon sun in summer is best.
All varieties require a humus rich well drained soil with good added compost and some aged cow manure added.
In containers, choose a good quality potting mix with some added compost.
Soil pH should be slightly acidic.
It is best to mulch around Gardenias rather than underplant as they do not like root competition.
Warmth with goof organic mulch to maintain a cool root system along with some protection from the heat of the afternoon sun provides optimal growing conditions.
Additional water during the warmer months, along with regular applications of a specialist gardenia fertiliser will be beneficial.
The best time to prune Gardenias is immediately after flowering. This is so we do not prune off the next seasons flower buds.
You can actually prune at any time from spring through summer, however pruning in spring can reduce flowering.
It is also recommended to remove any of the early buds that form in autumn, as these usually do not open, Removing them encourages new spring buds.
Always prune back to foliage, not into old bare wood, for best results.