Citrus Gardenia Hibiscus and Jasmin
LIGHT: Position your plant near a west or south-facing window to allow for four or more hours of bright light each day, but protect it from direct sun in the summer months.
Temperature: See SPECIFIC NEEDS
WATER: Keep soil evenly moist at all times, except as noted for citrus. Water thoroughly and allow the excess to drain away, or discard the drainage from the saucer. Don’t ever let your plant sit in water. In the winter reduce the amount of watering.
FERTILIZATION: These plants benefit from acid and iron supplements so a constant diet of 30-10-10 mixed at half strength in winter and at the full recommended rate during the growing season will help keep them happy.
HUMIDITY: They all thrive in humid conditions so frequent misting is advised.
Low light levels can prevent flowering. Bud drop is often the result of dry soil, under feeding or abrupt temperature changes. Dry air can cause leaves to curl, but complete leaf loss is often caused by allow the soil to dry out, over watering or cold temperatures. Citrus, Hibiscus and Gardenia are susceptible to spider mites and aphids. If this happens wash the plant with water and treat with Safers Insecticidal Soap.
GARDENIA: A beautiful but demanding plant, gardenia requires dedication to grow successfully. But if you get it right it will reward you with beautiful fragrant cream-coloured flowers and glossy dark green leaves. Flower bud formation is sensitive to night temperatures of 9-12°C but daytime temperatures should be 17-20°C. Bud drop will result from letting the soil dry out.
HIBISCUS: This plant requires average room temperatures and loves direct sun except during the heat of summer. With proper care, it can produce flowers from spring right through to autumn.
JASMINE: Jasmine require night temperatures of 17-19°C and daytime of 22°C. Keep this plant cool in winter and place it outdoors in summer. The soil should be kept moist at all times.
CITRUS: (orange, lemon, lime) These shrubby specimens require as much sun as you can provide them. Water them moderately but consistently, year-round. Summer is the normal flowering time for citrus plants but calamondins (also called calamansi or Philippine lime) can produce flowers and fruit all year long. They require good drainage and protection from cold drafts. But moderate and consistent cooler winter temperatures are beneficial and spending the summer outdoors is also favourable. Pollinating flowers by hand will help with fruit set.
Note: If purchasing a citrus plant while it bears fruit, it’s best not to eat the fruit until the next year.