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How Much Sun Do Gardenias Need?

bud of gardenia image by Igor Zhorov from

Gardenias are evergreen plants with fragrant white flowers that bloom from May through June, with some varieties blooming again in late summer. Although sunshine is important to a gardenia bush, it does need extra care during extremely hot, sunny months if blooms are to form.

Daytime Sunlight

Although a gardenia plant prefers full sun, it needs shade during the hotter months of the year. Its leaves will scorch in extremely hot, sunny weather, and its buds will fall off before they bloom if they get too much sunlight. Therefore, make sure you give your gardenia plants extra water during hot weather to ameliorate sun damage.

Protection from the Sun

While a gardenia bush does not need protection from the sun, it does need some protection from the heat the sun produces. So, besides giving your gardenias extra water during the hot days of summer, also construct and erect a canopy to block out the sun for a few hours during the hottest part of the day.

Sunlight and Blooms

Gardenias are beautiful plants, but they can be fussy about temperatures. If temperatures rise above 70 degrees during the day and/or rise above 65 or below 60 degrees at night, buds will not form.

Sun Should You Give Gardenias?

Gardenias (Gardenia jasminoides) are known for their fragrant, waxy white flowers that bloom from early spring to early summer. Gardenias have glossy green foliage and are attractive as specimen plants, accent plants in mixed borders or hedge plants in full sun to partial shade. They can tolerate full sun in cooler areas, especially if their root area is covered with organic mulch. The flowers on gardenias in too much sun usually turn brown faster than those in some shade. Gardenias bloom better in areas with high humidity and daytime temperatures from 65 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Periods of shade increase the humidity and lower the temperature around gardenias. To protect them from drying winter winds, plant them to the east or north of buildings or other structures.

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