There are many plants that require maintenance tasks such as pruning. One of these plants is the gardenia. There are many ways to prune the gardenias however, obtaining an optimal result will depend on the technique of the tailor. Certain criteria should be considered when pruning gardenias so that the results are as optimal as possible and the plant can continue to maintain good conditions.
In this article, we’ll tell you how to prune gardenias, when to do it, and what you need to consider.
Why prune gardenias
The purpose of pruning the gardenia is to redirect its energy and release damaged or wilting stems, leaves, and flowers. It’s good for the plants because helps prevent diseases and improves their development and appearanceit is therefore one of the most important tasks in the care of our plants.
The purpose of gardenia pruning is:
- Promotes plant growth.
- It is beneficial for light and ventilation of the plant stem.
- Remove damaged, broken, or dried branches, leaves, or flowers that may also harbor pests.
- Improve plant flowering.
- Enhances color.
This, if pruned correctly, will improve the development and appearance of the specimen. As a result, the size and flowering of the plant will increase.
When to Prune Gardenias
In general, the good time to prune gardenias is in early spring, before the plants are back to activity, as long as there is no risk of frost. This reduces sap loss and as it approaches the developmental stage, the wound will begin to heal quickly. In areas with warm winters, fall pruning may be a good option. Seasonal pruning is done once a year.
Gardenia care pruning can be done at any time of the year. This is a cleaning pruning to remove suckersthose young shoots protruding between the main stem and the branches, as well as yellowed or dry leaves, damaged stems or faded flowers.
How to Prune Gardenias
To prune gardenias, we only need secateurs, disinfect with alcohol from a pharmacy and wear gloves. There are different types of pruning depending on what you want to achieve, let’s take a look at them.
The purpose of maintenance pruning is leave room for healthy new shoots to grow and weed out bad elements from the plant. This pruning is done in conjunction with other maintenance tasks throughout the year.
First, we will remove the suction cups as follows:
- We will find secondary shoots or shoots that appear between the first leaf and the main stem.
- Later we will carefully cut the suction cup so that the cut is as close to the main stem as possible without damaging it. It is best to do this when the buds are less than 5 cm.
- Cut the branches diagonally so that the water can drain away. This will prevent water from remaining in the wound and causing it to rot.
We will then remove the following unwanted items:
- Dead, dry or diseased stems, leaves and flowers.
- The buds coming out of the feet of the plant are weak or badly placed and we are not interested in their development.
- Crossed branches, misdirected or tangled bushes.
- Wilted flowers destroy and deplete the plant’s energy.
Flower pruning is done annually, usually in late winter or early spring, to increase the flowering of the plant. We will proceed as follows:
- winter pruningwhen the worst of the cold has passed, around mid-February
- Buds that have already bloomed will never bloom again, so they must be removed so that new buds can emerge.
- Flowering pruning can be done at the same time as cleaning.
- Do not cut stems that do not flower, as they will flower the following year.
- Remember that the best conditions for plants to flower vigorously are moist conditions and plenty of light.
Rejuvenation pruning is a technique that involves removing dry, damaged and unnecessary parts of a plant to clean it and sprout new shoots. It is recommended to do this before the start of the flowering season. This is vigorous pruning that rejuvenates gardenias, although it can also be done gradually.
- Drastic Rejuvenation Size: In the first case, what we do is prune the whole plant down to the ground. This should only be done if the specimen is strong enough to support it and provide irrigation and fertilization.
- Gradual rejuvenation size: It consists of removing 50% of the branches by aligning them with the insert. The remaining branches are cut to half the length, or just one third from the tip of the best branches we can find above.
Step by step
Here are the steps for pruning gardenias:
- Squeeze the growing tips the first year after planting. Grab the tip of each stem with your fingers and place it on the topmost bud or leaf. Press every four to six weeks in spring and summer when gardenias are growing vigorously. Pinching it makes it smaller and fuller.
- Cut dried flowers in the spring after they bloom and wilt. Cut off the entire flower head so that the gardenia cannot go to seed and weaken the bush. Prune indoor and outdoor gardenias after picking the flowers.
- Cut the branches above the leaves or buds to no more than a quarter of its length to maintain the shape and size of the plant.
- Prune dry and damaged wood in the spring. Move these branches close to healthy wood on the same branch or where they connect with other healthy wood. Pots kept outdoors year-round are more susceptible to dry wood and winter wilt.
Hopefully with this information you can learn more about pruning gardenias and what to keep in mind.