Don’s Expert Answers: Non flowering gardenia

Question From:
Nicole in Abbottsford, Nsw New South Wales

Nature of problem:
Non flowering gardenia

Type of Plant (if known):
My gardenia wind flower and the leaves are constantly riddled with these tiny green mites. They are not aphids but more flat looking.

Symptoms of Plant Illness (please try NOT to diagnose your problems yourself):
The plant has green leaves and an ongoing of yellowing leaves. Sometimes there are little white fluffy “things inthe stems and little green mites as shown in photo all over the leaves. The plant has never flowered.

Soil Type (e.g. sandy, clay or loam) OR Potting Mix Type:
Gardenia mix soil from bunnings

How often do you water the plant:
Ever 2 days. Sometimes I forget and may leave it a week without water. And the leaves start drooping

How many hours of sunlight does the plant get each day:
It’s under ourPergola so it gets the morning sun

How long since you planted it:
I have had it since it was a small plant and had been in this point for about 2years

Have you fertilised? If so, with what and when:
Yes every 2montha with seasol

Is the plant indoors or outdoors:

Is the plant in a pot or in the ground:

What other treatments have you given the plant:
In the early stages I gave it magnesium ince as the leaves were severely yellow and the lady at Bunnings gave that as a solution

Upload photo if available:

Other Comments:
Please help.
I am constantly trying to resurrect this plant.
This was given to me as a gift when we first bought our home. It has only ever flowered once with one flower.

Hi Nicole, Thanks for such good information and a very helpful photo. All gardenias suffer during Sydney’s Winters – they hate cold weather, which turns them yellow. So don’t expect a fast recovery. Your gardenia has scale insects, not mites. Seasol is a growth and health promoter, not a fertiliser. Magnesium does not help yellow gardenias – this is an old husband’s tale.

So what is wrong and what to do about it. The gardenia needs more sun to get well and have flowers. So move it into a sunnier but warm position. Fertilise your gardenia with Osmocote All Purpose liquid fertiliser now, and apply Osmocote slow release fertitliser in September. Spray the leaves and stems with Eco Oil to kill the scale insects. Do a follow up spraying in December. If there is a saucer under the plant, remove it.

Due to Winter, this plant will get worse before it gets better. Recovery should be evident from November onwards. Good luck, Don