With their lovely, soft scented blooms appearing from late spring to early summer, and their soft creamy white colour, is it any wonder that Gardenias (Gardenia spp.) have become firm favourites with gardeners? There are many different perennial varieties available from ground covers to standards, or well sized bushes which can be turned into loose hedges.


How to grow Gardenias in a garden

  1. Choose a full sun to part shade position with well drained soil.
  2. Check the soil pH using a soil pH test kit. Gardenias prefer an acidic soil between 5.0 and 6.0. If the soil pH is higher than 6.0 apply Yates Soil Acidifier Liquid Sulfur
  3. Enrich the soil with Yates Dynamic Lifter Organic Plant Food. If the soil is clay based, add gypsum and fork in well. 
  4. Dig the planting hole twice as wide and to the same depth as the root-ball. Remove the plant from the container and gently tease the roots.
  5. Position in hole and backfill, gently firming down. Form a raised ring around the plant, creating a well so that water will go where it’s needed most. Water in well. 
  6. Mulch with an organic mulch like woodchip or pea straw, keeping it away from the base of the plant.
  7. Water deeply, once or twice a week, depending on weather conditions.
  8. During the growing and flowering season feed with Yates Thrive Camellia, Gardenia & Blueberry Granular Plant Food. TIP: for an added boost apply Yates Thrive Roses & Flowers Liquid Plant Food
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How to grow Gardenias in a garden

  1. Choose a pot at least 350-500mm wide.
  2. Position in full sun to part shade and fill with quality potting mix, such as Yates Premium Potting Mix. To acidify the potting mix apply Yates Soil Acidifier Liquid Sulfur.
  3. Remove the plant from the container and gently tease the roots.
  4. Position in hole and backfill, gently firming down. Water in well.
  5. Water deeply, once or twice a week, depending on weather conditions.
  6. During the growing and flowering season, apply Yates Thrive Roses & Flowers Liquid Plant Food. Throughout the year apply Yates Thrive Fish Blood & Bone Plant Food Concentrate.

Growing tips

  • Mulch over the root system with an organic layer, milled cow manure is ideal, but an organic mix such as pea straw will also suffice.

  • Ensure potted gardenias aren’t allowed to dry out between waterings - keep the soil moderately moist at all times.

  • In very dry climates it can also be helpful to mist spray water over the leaves on hot days, although not when the sun is directly shining on the plant.

  • Gardenias prefer an acidic soil between 5.0 and 6.0. Check the soil pH using a soil pH test kit. If the soil pH is higher than 6.0 apply Yates Soil Acidifier Liquid Sulfur.
  • Remove spent blooms to encourage further growth.

  • If the plant does get leggy and long, tip prune or hard prune in the winter to allow for new shoots and bushier growth.

  • You can propagate these plants by soft wood cuttings in autumn and winter. Try Yates Clonex Root Gel - Softwood and Semi-Hard Wood Purple to improve cutting success.

  • Flowers are often used in weddings or as a fragrant cut flower indoors.

  • Great for therapeutic gardens for their lovely scent, soft petals and no tools are required to remove the dead flowers making it easy for anyone to perform this task.

  • Varieties include:

    Gardenia Magnifica – G. Jasminoides ‘Magnifica’
    This Gardenia has a lovely soft bloom and is quite well perfumed. It can grow up to 2.5 metres high and produces larger flowers compared to other Gardenia varieties and cultivars.

    Gardenia Florida - G. augusta ‘Florida’
    This plant can tolerate both part shade and full sun. It has large glossy leaves that have a lovely contrast with the soft flowers when they appear. Can grow to 1.5 metre tall and is great for soft and informal hedging.

    Gardenia Radicans – G. augusta ‘Radicans’
    Smaller growing variety which grows best in full sun, but can still handle part shaded conditions. This plant has smaller leaves than ‘Florida’ and grows to about 0.5 metre tall and 1.5 metre wide. Flowers are small, but still fragrant. Great for an alternative low ground cover in garden beds.

More Plants

Flax

Flax (Phormium spp.) are highly versatile plants which can grow well in swampy or dry conditions. Great for large pots or en-masse in garden beds.

English Daisy

English Daisy flowers come in single or double forms in colours of pink, red and white. Ideal in pots or in the garden as a border plant or en masse.

Echinacea

Echinacea is a hardy herbaceous perennial with large fragrant pink daisy-like flowers. Used for therapeutic purposes and as a delicious tea.

Virginian Stock

Bright pink, purple, and white blooms prolifically cover this flowering annual in spring and summer. They're easy to grow and are perfectly suited to garden beds, borders and pots.


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