QUICK REFERENCE PLANTING GUIDE
1. Light/Sun Exposure - Full sun to part shade.
2. USDA Hardiness Zones - As indicated below.
- 'August Beauty' - Not winter hardy. We recommend planting in a container in all zones.
- 'Golden Magic' - Winter hardy in zones 8 to 10.
- 'Buttons' - Winter hardy in zones 8 to 10.
- Gardenia Patio Tree 'Miami Supreme' - Winter hardy in zone 7-10. Zones 6-3, we recommend planting in a container and providing winter protection.
3. Planting Distance - 3 feet apart in-ground. One plant per 16 inch or larger container.
4. Mature Height/Spread - As indicated below.
- 'Heaven Scent' - 4 feet tall with a similar spread.
- 'Pinwheel' - 3 to 4 feet tall with a similar spread.
- 'Frost Proof' - 3 to 4 feet tall with a similar spread.
- 'August Beauty' - 4 feet tall with a similar spread.
- 'Golden Magic' - 3 to 4 feet tall with a similar spread.
- 'Buttons' - 2 to 3 feet tall with a similar spread.
- Gardenia Patio Tree 'Miami Supreme' - 4 to 6 feet tall with a spread of 3 to 4 feet.
5. Bloom Time - Heaviest in mid to late spring/early summer with sporadic bloom throughout the remainder of the year.
- 'Heaven Scent' - Mid to late spring bloom time.
- 'Pinwheel' - Late spring to mid-summer.
- 'Frost Proof' - Summer bloom time.
- August Beauty' - Spring to summer bloom time.
- 'Golden Magic' - Summer to fall.
- 'Buttons' - Summer to fall bloom time.
- Gardenia Patio Tree 'Miami Supreme' - Heaviest spring to summer and intermittently the remainder of the year.
6. Planting Instructions - As indicated below.
For container planting: Fill the container to within four inches of the rim. Gently remove the plant from its plastic container and loosen up any roots that may have encircled the root ball. Place the plant in the container and fill it with the remaining soil. Water thoroughly so the water runs out of the bottom drainage holes. If necessary, reset the plant so that it is upright and fill in with soil if needed.
For in-ground planting: Dig a hole twice as wide and twice as deep as the pot in which your plant was grown. Please note that many of our pots are biodegradable. If your plant is not in a traditional plastic pot then you may place the entire biodegradable pot in the ground; otherwise, gently remove the root ball from the pot. Partially backfill the hole with soil and place the plant into the hole. The top of the root ball should be level with the ground surrounding the hole. Refill the hole with soil, firming the soil around the plant with your fingers. Check to be sure that the plant is not planted too deeply. If it is, raise the plant carefully and refirm the soil. Water thoroughly.
GET THE MOST ENJOYMENT
The gardenia that you received is highly prized for its profusion of sweetly fragrant double blooms. It is also excellent for cut flowers for floating in a bowl of water or for making corsages. If you live in an area where it is hardy in-ground, it can grow into a spectacular flowering shrub from which you can readily cut 'loads' of bouquets.
Although these plants will perform well in average garden soils of all types, we recommend having your soil tested periodically by the local County Extension Office. These tests can determine if the soil needs any amendments to enhance your plants' growth and performance. See below for our recommended practice to improve your soil without any additional testing:
1. Spade or till the soil to a depth of 12-18 inches.
2. To provide nutrients and improve drainage, add organic matter to your soil by mixing in a 2 to 4-inch layer of dehydrated manure, garden compost, shredded leaves, and/or peat moss.
3. After active growth begins, periodically feed with Cottage Farms' water soluble Carefree Bud-N-Flower Booster for Acid Loving Plants. Plants in containers need more frequent watering and feeding, especially when in active growth and bloom.
Water - Your plants require 1" of rainfall (or equivalent watering) each week when planted in the ground. Do not allow plants in containers to dry out. In a container that is exposed to full sun, water it well at least once every other day, and possibly every day, during periods of intense summer heat. You may wish to temporarily move containerized plants to an area where they are shielded from the hot summer sun (i.e. in the shade of a tree, on a porch near an overhang).
Mulching - Apply a 2-4 inch layer of shredded bark, compost or other organic mulch around your plants to promote moisture retention, maintain even soil temperatures, and to discourage weed growth.
Weeding - Keep the area around your plants free of weeds. Weeds compete with all plants for food, water and light. Walk around the garden periodically and pull weeds, including the roots, as soon as you see them.
Grooming - Improves the size and quality of the bush and maintains a healthy, happy plant for many years. Remove any branches that become overlapped, damaged, or unsightly.
Feeding - Feed your plants once every 2-3 weeks during the growing season with a water-soluble fertilizer such as Cottage Farms' Carefree Bud-N-Flower Booster for Acid Loving Plants. Discontinue feeding after September 1st so your plants can harden off for winter dormancy. Resume fertilizing when new growth appears in the spring.
Winterizing - Hardy outdoors in warmer zones (see USDA Hardiness Zones above for varietal information). In zones where this plant is not winter hardy, move it indoors before the first frost.
When you bring your plant indoors for the winter, select a room that is bright, preferably one with a southern exposure. Even a bathroom will do if it has a southern exposure. Indoors, plants tend to dry out from lack of humidity; however; this does not mean to water them daily. Bathrooms simply provide natural humidity for the plant's environment.
If you place your plant in any other room, you can boost the humidity level around your plant by filling a shallow tray with gravel and water then placing the pot in the tray. The water level should be slightly below the gravel so that the pot is not submerged in the water. You may also use a spray bottle to mist the plant with water once a week.
All other watering and feeding indoors should be reduced significantly. Do not over water or allow your plants to sit in water. If you follow these simple steps and remove unsightly or dead growth over the winter, your plant will extend its performance of joy from the day you received it.
In the spring when temperatures begin to rise, ease the plant into a full watering schedule and move back outdoors for the summer.
CAUTION: Not all plant material is edible. Though most plants are harmless, some contain toxic substances which can cause headaches, nausea, dizziness, or other discomforts. As a general rule, only known food products should be eaten. In case of ingestion, please contact your local poison control center at once and advise them of the plant ingested. Keep out of reach of children.