Tomatoville® Gardening Forums


Notices

General information and discussion about cultivating fruit-bearing plants, trees, flowers and ornamental plants.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old November 30, 2012   #1
Deborah
Riding The Crazy Train Again
 
Deborah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: San Marcos, California
Posts: 2,562
Default My Thousandth Gardenia-Trying Again !

I once vowed to never try a gardenia again. Today at Lowe's I fell for a beauty-three feet across and loaded with flowers and buds.
In the past I have pampered them with acid potting soil, acid food, crossed fingers, toes and eyes and they still always turned light green, lost their buds to some kind of black burrowing bug, and even wilted. WHAT IS THE SECRET????
Deborah is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 30, 2012   #2
Sun City Linda
Tomatovillian™
 
Sun City Linda's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: SoCal Inland
Posts: 2,704
Default

I love them too. The secret is to keep buying more gardenia plants!
Sun City Linda is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 30, 2012   #3
Deborah
Riding The Crazy Train Again
 
Deborah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: San Marcos, California
Posts: 2,562
Default

Linda, HOW COULD YOU !!! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO !!!!!!!!!!
Deborah is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 30, 2012   #4
bwaynef
Tomatovillian™
 
bwaynef's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Clemson SC
Posts: 143
Default

You would hate me for what I did to some established Gardenias in my yard last summer. We won't talk about it, ok?

The ones I have in my yard are in pretty constant shade, along with all the other ones I've owned that have thrived (thriven?). I don't know where you're putting yours ...or even if that's a preference for Gardenia, but its the experience I have.
bwaynef is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 30, 2012   #5
Deborah
Riding The Crazy Train Again
 
Deborah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: San Marcos, California
Posts: 2,562
Default

I won't hate you. I'm only drooling with envy. Here's my new approach-I had a talk with it, and informed it that it's going to be a case of TOUGH LOVE. I won't even buy it a nice pot-I stuck it in a pretty trash can, and it gets the pot it's in and Miracle Grow. I figure if it can get so big and so gorgeous in the nursery pot it can jolly well stay there !
Deborah is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 30, 2012   #6
habitat_gardener
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: California Central Valley
Posts: 2,455
Default

I grew a gardenia in a container, years before I knew much about gardening (and before computers and the internet). It sat on a balcony, and I used regular potting soil and no fertilizer. It thrived and bloomed well. After I'd had it for a few years, I was surprised to find out that gardenias were difficult to grow!

Now, knowing a little about gardening, I wonder if you might be overfeeding it. Pests are often attracted to the new tender growth promoted by fertilizers.

Or maybe it's one of those plants that doesn't like to be looked at directly. You kind of have to ignore it most of the time, sidling up to it and sneaking a glance now and then.
habitat_gardener is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 1, 2012   #7
saltmarsh
Tomatovillian™
 
saltmarsh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: 2 miles south of Yoknapatawpha Zone 7b
Posts: 655
Default

I do love the smell of gardenia. When I bought my home in 1975 it came with 2 gardenias which were over 70 years old. One on each side of the front porch steps. They were growing in plain clay soil under the shade of post oak trees which were about the same age. They had been neglected for years since the woman whose husband had the house built in 1901 had died. They were still healthy and were loaded with flowers each year inspite of or because of total neglect.

Over the years I've taken numerous cuttings and after rooting them, I've planted more around the yard and given them to anyone who wanted them.

To root a dozen cuttings, take a 2 gallon black plastic pot like a shrub comes in. Fill the pot with ordinary sand. I have a friend who does dirt work and I can get all the sand straight from the ground I need. Try not to use washed sand like you would buy from the store.

After you have your pot of sand wet it with water until it is saturated.

Take a margarine tub and put a couple of inches of tap water in it.

Now take your cuttings. Don't cut straight across, cut them on an angle. You want cuttings which are straight, about the size of a pencil, and 10 inches long. As you make the cuttings strip off any branches and leaves, only leaving 3 leaves at the top of each cutting and place the cutting bottom side down in the tub of water.

When you have all of your cuttings take them back over to your tub of sand and water the sand again.

After the water settles below the surface of the sand, dip the bottom of each cutting in rootnone, tap off the excess and use a pencil to make a hole in the center of the sand in the pot and insert the cutting into the hole with about 3 inches sticking above the sand. Don't worry about packing sand around it. Now do the same thing with the rest of the cuttings leaving about 2 inches between each cutting and its neighbor.

Now water the sand again. Then take 2 wire coat hangars, straighten them out and stick them in the sand at the edge of the pot to form a crossed hoop over the cuttings. Finally, place a white plastic grocery bag over the hoops and tie it around the top of the pot using twine.

Set the pot in partial shade and leave it alone for 2 months. If at the end of 2 months if you are not ready to plant, that's ok the cuttings will be fine for up to 6 months.

When you are ready to plant (any time after 2 months) use sissors to cut 4 slits 2 inches long in the plastic bag about an inch above the rim of the pot and cut a 2 inch circle from the top of the bag. Leave it alone for another week. This will harden the cuttings off.

After the cuttings are hardened off decide where you are going to plant them and dig a hole about 12 inches in diameter and 8 inches deep. pulverize the soil you removed from the holes. Take 3 or 4 cups of the pulverized soil, put it in a plastic tub and mix it with enough water until it is about the consistancy of pancake batter. Take the tub of mud over to the cuttings and remove the plastic bag and wire hoops from the cutting pot. Lay the cutting pot on its side and flood the sand with water to wash sand from the roots. Carefully separate the cuttings and as they come free, pull them back and forth in the mud to coat the roots completely. When the roots are coated with mud, stand the cutting inside the tub and do the rest the same way.
When the cuttings have been mudded take them to the holes and plant them at the same depth they were in the sand. Fill the hole half full with the pulverized soil you removed from the hole and water the dirt until about an inch of water is standing on the surface.
Plant the rest using the same procedure. Now go back and put the rest of the dirt in each hole. Water throughly and unless you are in the middle of a drought, let nature do the rest. Claud

Last edited by saltmarsh; December 1, 2012 at 02:43 AM.
saltmarsh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 1, 2012   #8
Deborah
Riding The Crazy Train Again
 
Deborah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: San Marcos, California
Posts: 2,562
Default

It'starting to sound like neglect is the way to go ! Thank you for the rooting instructions.
Deborah is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 2, 2012   #9
peebee
Tomatovillian™
 
peebee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Southern CA
Posts: 1,714
Default

Ha Ha Ha! This reminded me of a long-running post on a garden forum: look up in any search engine "So you want to grow a gardenia huh?" It is hilarious and gave me much comfort as I too struggled for years to grow a gardenia. I have copied and pasted one post from that below in its entirety. Take a look:

Posted by: ROBERT HUGGINS - 10 ) on Thu, Aug 12, 99 at 14:51 DEAR JOAN, ONLY AN IDIOT WOULD SPEND THAT MUCH TIME AND EFFORT FOR A SIMPLE PLANT!MY FRIENDS RECOMMENDED THAT I TAKE UP GARDENING TO RELAX AND ENJOY NATURE.OVER THE PAST SIX YEARS I BOUGHT EIGHT BEAUTIFUL AND FRAGANT GARDENIAS,MYSTERY,FIRST LOVE AND ETC AND AFTER SIX YEARS THESE SIMPLE PLANTS HAS TAUGHT ME HOW TO RELAX.AFTER SIX YEARS I TAKE FOUR VALUIM AND A HALF A GALLON OF SCOTCH AND STAGGER OUT FOR MY NEXT TRY TO KEEP MY ONE PLANT ALIVE.AFTER 3000 HRS ON THE INTERNET,GARDENING BOOKS AND HELP FROM THREE HUNDRED PROFESSIONAL GROWERS AND FOUR GARDENING CDS.HERE WHAT I HAVE LEARN. THEY LIKE WATER BUT YOU HAVE TO KEEP THE SEMI DRY.THEY LOVED SUN BUT YOU HAVE TO KEEP IN THE SHADE.YOU FEED THEM OFTEN.DISCRIBED AS SOMEWHERE BETWEEN TWO DAYS AND TWO YEARS ONLY ON SUNDAYS WITH A BLUE MOON RISING.THEY LOVED NORTHERN EXPOSURE IF YOU HAVE THEM ON THE SOUTHERN.THEY LOVE ACID AND IRON UNLESS YOU GIVE IT TO THEM.THEY LOVE TO GROW SPIDER MITES,WHICH YOU CANT SEE,AND APHIDS. I HAVE FOUND IF YOU BUY OLDER PLANTS THEY TAKE LONGER TO DIE.MY FRIEND SUGGESTED THAT WHEN ONE OF THE SIMPLE PLANTS WASNT DOING WELL TO MOVE TO THE NORTHERN SUN WHICH A LOT.IT DIED QUICKER.WELL I HAVE TO GO NOW MY FRIENDS IN THE WHITE JACKETS ARE COMING TO PULL ME AWAY FROM MY BELOVED GARDENIA. ITS OKAY I HEAR THEY HAVE A SALE ON GARDENIA IN THE NOVELTY SHOP.
peebee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 2, 2012   #10
Sun City Linda
Tomatovillian™
 
Sun City Linda's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: SoCal Inland
Posts: 2,704
Default

Peebee - Hysterical, thanks for posting. I will have to look up the thread!
Sun City Linda is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 2, 2012   #11
Deborah
Riding The Crazy Train Again
 
Deborah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: San Marcos, California
Posts: 2,562
Default

Hilarious ! Today I pushed three pennies into the pot and gave it its first watering. Maybe the pennies will release some minerals or something.
Deborah is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 2, 2012   #12
saltmarsh
Tomatovillian™
 
saltmarsh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: 2 miles south of Yoknapatawpha Zone 7b
Posts: 655
Default

Deborah, I don't know about the pennies I don't think they're made of copper anymore, but would you like to try lactobacillus? Claud

Last edited by saltmarsh; December 2, 2012 at 11:50 PM.
saltmarsh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 3, 2012   #13
Deborah
Riding The Crazy Train Again
 
Deborah's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: San Marcos, California
Posts: 2,562
Default

What's lactobillus? Sounds yogurty.
Deborah is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 3, 2012   #14
Sun City Linda
Tomatovillian™
 
Sun City Linda's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: SoCal Inland
Posts: 2,704
Default

I'm bored. It is cold and rainy. I have no lack of things I could do, dishes being the most obvious. I am going to Lowes. I need a gardenia.
Sun City Linda is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 3, 2012   #15
saltmarsh
Tomatovillian™
 
saltmarsh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: 2 miles south of Yoknapatawpha Zone 7b
Posts: 655
Default

Lactobillus are bacteria which live in our small intestine. Organic yogurt is a cheap source for live lactobillus. The idea is to inoculate the plants and roots with lactobillus and the bacteria break down and make nutrients available to the plants just as they do for us. After you process the quart of yogurt you have a stable source of live lactobillus which doesn't require refrigeration and makes over 250 gallons of spray to use on your plants.
saltmarsh is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:34 PM.


★ Tomatoville® is a registered trademark of Commerce Holdings, LLC ★ All Content ©2019 Commerce Holdings, LLC ★