Gardenia flowering!!


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I have been growing 5 gardenias from seed since January. They were inside until May when I put them out, and then I brought them back in at the beginning of September. They went through the usual shock most sensitive plants do when brought inside but survived nicely and are back to growing. They are between 2 and 3 feet tall but haven't flowered yet. Gardenias set the their flower buds for the next year in the fall so I had no expectations for a plant less than a year old to flower until next year. Low and behold, this is what I woke up to this morning!!! Smells soooo good!! :p

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Congratulations Java Guy:). How wonderful. Gardenias are sensitive so you've done a great job. I've tried with a standard in the garden but it did't make it :( and a standard gardenia is not cheap! It is such a lovely fragrant flower.
 
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Wow -- excellent job! They look like they're thriving. I'm yet to have luck with flowers from seed - I always buy them pre-potted, I've been intimidated from growing from seed after a couple of previous failures! Do you have any particular tips or tricks that saw you have this much success with your plants?
 
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Amellia88, thanks for the compliments. I have had far more failures than successes germinating seeds. Some are easier than others. The blue gum and lemon scented eucalyptus tree seeds are fool proof. 90-95% of those germinate which is a lot when you plant 20 expecting a bunch to fail! I had to give a bunch away. Of the olive, pine, elm, redwoods, and various other tree / plant seeds I planted, I got zero success. The last seeds I planted were 15 dwarf myrtles (I have 4 growing), 10 white gardenia..gardenia thunbergia (1 is struggling to grow, 2 others have sprouted but are sickly), and 5 pink wild pear (1 growing).

The gardenia in the picture is a Cape Jasmine (gardenia jasminoides). Of all the seeds I've planted, and that number is probably pushing 1000, it is by far the easiest and most successful seed to plant. And like I showed in the picture, 10 months later I have a 2-3 foot tall flowering gardenia. What would that cost to buy? $40-50? A pack of 30 seeds ran me $3 off of Amazon.

Tips or tricks? It's all preparation. For these particular gardenias, I scuffed each seed up with 150 grit sand paper. All you have to do is run one edge of the seed over the sand paper a couple times to scratch it up. Then I put the seeds in a cup of warm water for 24 hours. You will notice seeds sinking to the bottom...those are most likely viable seeds (not always though). After 24 hours you will probably see some seeds still floating. Those are probably empty seeds. A lot of people just toss those out but I plant them too...you never know!! After 24 hours time to plant!! I use 1 part sphagnum moss, 1 part vermiculite. I avoid perlite for my seeds because I caught a couple seeds that were trapped under some large perlite and they couldn't sprout and died. Gardenias are sown 1/4 below the surface. I just poked holes with a pencil using the eraser side dropped the seeds and covered them up. You want to try and keep the soil around 70 degrees. A heating pad is great or a warm windowsill. After that just keep the soil moist and in 30 days or so you will have little baby pac-man gardenias springing up everywhere!!

**Important note to planting seeds: ** All seeds have a built in ability called "geotropism" which enables them to orient themselves to gravity so their roots grow down. If you plant the seed upside down it has to expend a lot of energy turning itself around, weakening it. More than likely it will still sprout but why put the seed through unnecessary stress? So you want to locate the radicle of the seed and plant that part down or on it's side a bit. That is the place where the seed was attached to the plant and is easy to see. Now the root goes straight down and your baby seedling pops up strong.

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Wow, I can't imagine growing a gardenia from seed. I wasn't even aware gardenias produced seed. I successfully rooted a cutting from what I believe is a frostproof last year, and I have a larger leaf variety that I purchased. I started a few other things at the end of last year that have blooms coming in already - pretty exciting! Congratulations!
 
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That is beautiful and I bet it smell wonderful too. The only time I saw gardenia is when I go to Belle Isle Conservatory. They have some there and the flowers smell so wonderful. You have green thumb :)
 
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@ChanellG..Absolutely can be grown from seed, and if I lived down in Louisiana by you, I'd have a Gardenia farm! It's hard growing them in Michigan without a greenhouse. You're pretty limited by indoor window space. Below are pictures of my struggling gardenia thunbergia I mentioned in a post above. The babies are really struggling but I haven't given up yet! The other one is going to have to go under lights where I can control it's environment better. It's not taking to sitting by the window well yet.

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That is beautiful and I bet it smell wonderful too. The only time I saw gardenia is when I go to Belle Isle Conservatory. They have some there and the flowers smell so wonderful. You have green thumb :)
Thanks IcyBC. Gardenias are my favorite, even above fuchsias. It's a shame more people don't have these in their houses...the smells!!!!
 
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@Java Guy, I had to google gardenia thunbergia. We sell a flowering thunbergia vine that is nothing like a gardenia, lol, and a bunch of gardenias that look nothing the photos in my search results. I recently discovered gardenia azaleas in our shrub area - there are just so many plants!
 
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ChanellG..thank you so much for bringing these azalea gardenias to my attention! They look amazing! I have never heard of them. I am going to look around and see if seeds are available for purchase.

If you plan on trying to grow gardenias from seed I would recommend going with the jasminoides over the thunbergia for two reasons. First, I had much greater success with jasminoides. I got 30 seeds in a packet. I planted 10 in each small pot because I didn't expect more than a couple to sprout. A month later it was like an explosion went off in each pot. Nearly all of them sprouted..a few of them knocked their little brothers and sisters right out of the soil! The thunbergia's were not as successful as I only got 3 out of 10 to sprout and those are on life support. Second reason, jasminoide flowers are far more fragrant than thunbergia flowers. That and the leaves are larger.

Either way you go though, a gardenia is a gardenia, queen of the garden in my opinion!
 
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ChanellG..thank you so much for bringing these azalea gardenias to my attention...

If you plan on trying to grow gardenias from seed I would recommend going with the jasminoides over the thunbergia... I got 30 seeds..planted 10 in each small pot... A month later it was like an explosion went off... Nearly all of them sprouted..a few of them knocked their little brothers and sisters right out of the soil! The thunbergia's were not as successful...
You're welcome!

That must be why I hadn't heard of the two types. I'm sure the ones commonly seen here are Jasminoides - some are even reminiscent of double bloom jasmine. I almost always soak my seeds and then sprout them with the paper towel method. With larger seeds I will nick the coat or sand it slightly with a nail file to help them along.
 
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I love flowers and your gardenia is really amazing! No wonder you had this God given talent and that is in your hands to grow the plants that He created for us to see the beauty of nature. You are blessed for this and continue to grow more flowering plants because they are wonderful!
 
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I have tried the paper towel method. I failed with everything I tried
I love flowers and your gardenia is really amazing! No wonder you had this God given talent and that is in your hands to grow the plants that He created for us to see the beauty of nature. You are blessed for this and continue to grow more flowering plants because they are wonderful!
Thanks for the compliments. Gardenias are my favorite plants...and they are a pain in the butt indoors in winter. I really was amazed that this plant flowered so soon. I saw my gardenias setting buds for next spring and the next thing I knew out comes a flower. I think it was anxious to say hello and didn't want to wait until next spring :)
 
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I have tried the paper towel method. I failed with everything I tried
I mentioned your growing/seed starting to a colleague and she said that some gardenias produce a fruit. We happened to be standing in front of a thunbergia vine at the time coincidentally. I'm pretty sure the gardenia I have is some kind of jasminoide. I usually deadhead, but now you have me wondering about it.
 
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Gardenias are picky some times buggers. However it looks as though you've done one heck of a job with your Gardenias. Much respect too you bro, Oh and how long did it take you to get them to the stage they are now?
 
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I mentioned your growing/seed starting to a colleague and she said that some gardenias produce a fruit. We happened to be standing in front of a thunbergia vine at the time coincidentally. I'm pretty sure the gardenia I have is some kind of jasminoide. I usually deadhead, but now you have me wondering about it.
I figured they had some sort of fruit since there are gardenia seeds but I hadn't bothered to really investigate since I figured I was no where near the flowering stage with how young mine are. I googled and here are the fruits!

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Gardenias are picky some times buggers. However it looks as though you've done one heck of a job with your Gardenias. Much respect too you bro, Oh and how long did it take you to get them to the stage they are now?
I planted these seeds last Christmas and they sprouted a few weeks into January so they are about 10 months old.
 
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I have tried the paper towel method. I failed with everything I tried

Thanks for the compliments. Gardenias are my favorite plants...and they are a pain in the butt indoors in winter. I really was amazed that this plant flowered so soon. I saw my gardenias setting buds for next spring and the next thing I knew out comes a flower. I think it was anxious to say hello and didn't want to wait until next spring :)
You are welcome! I knew that there are only a few man who loves gardening and especially who likes to grow flowering plants. That is why I had said that you had a gifted hand to grow and taking care of plants :)
 
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You are welcome! I knew that there are only a few man who loves gardening and especially who likes to grow flowering plants. That is why I had said that you had a gifted hand to grow and taking care of plants :)
Thanks:) My guy friends think I'm crazy. I'm not exactly the type one would expect to be into this kind of thing. I've always loved the outdoors and nature. I'm not a "tree hugger" or PETA member (not that I have anything against those things) but growing up in a small town and spending my childhood in the country, I appreciate things some people don't see or were never exposed to. Everything I grow is intended to be a bonsai tree at some point. I love bonsai trees!! :love: When my dog died last year I was devastated. My girlfriend at the time bought me a bonsai tree to give me something to take care of...to take my mind off of it a bit. It helped and I've been into bonsai ever since. Luckily, there is a really knowledgeable bonsai guy who owns a store near where I live. I spend a lot of my free time picking his brain. For me, a gardenia bonsai is the ultimate prize. Below is what I hope to have myself one day.

Who can argue this is anything but amazing?

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