The 5 Best Fertilizers for Gardenias

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Only the best fertilizers will allow you gardenias to have beautiful blooms. The difference between a good one and an average one can be quite different even though the price may be the same. Don’t let marketing hype or poor decisions impact your creamy-white flowers.

Gardenias are absolutely magnificent when they are raised appropriately. Setting your plant up for success is crucial. By using a high quality plant food, you will help maximize your chances of developing beautiful blooms. Unfortunately, there are so many different products on the market that it can be difficult to choose between the different products nowadays. I’ve done the leg work to help you simplify your decision. Keep on reading to learn more.

At A Glance

These are our top recommended products. They all have the proper N-P-K ratio and utilize top notch ingredients. Below are some short reviews and descriptions of our top recommendations

Comparing Our Top 3 Recommendations

Healthy Gardenia Shrub

Best Fertilizers for Gardenias

Miracle-Gro Miracid

N-P-K Ratio: 30-10-10

Miracid produced by Miracle-Gro was crafted specifically with acid-loving flowers in mind. A blend of nitrogen, phosphate, potash, and other trace minerals helps to revitalize the soil and deliver nutrients directly to the plant’s roots. In addition, this water-soluble plant food is easy to apply with a watering can, sprayer, or garden hose attachment. Additionally, although it’s strong enough to boost growth and flower production, it’s gentle enough that it won’t burn any flowers and won’t harm any of the surrounding plants.

Nelson Acid Loving Plant Food

N-P-K Ratio: 9-13-11

Nelson’s plant food is the perfect choice for flowers in the Rubiaceae family because it contains a carefully crafted blend of nitrogen, potash, and phosphate and four acidifying ingredients that lower the pH of the soil. In addition, the nitrogen helps to create greener leaves and gently nourishes the roots. Other minerals and ingredients, such as cottonseed and iron, help to strengthen plants and ensure steady growth. The nutrients begin to work immediately after application, and plants treated with this product are often hardier and produce more flowers.

Jobe’s Spikes

N-P-K Ratio: 9-8-7

Jobe’s spikes make feeding indoor or outdoor plants incredibly simple. They can be pushed into the soil near the plant’s roots, where they will deliver a continuous supply of nutrients directly to the plant’s roots. Because these spikes have a slow-release formula, they feed plants for a full season, so it’s ideal to apply them during the late spring or early summer months. These spikes also help to lower the pH of the soil, creating a high acid level for acid-loving plants. In addition, the spike shape helps to eliminate runoff, and there is much less mess.

Gardenia Liquid Plant Food

N-P-K Ratio: 3-1-2

This liquid plant food was designed specifically with gardenias in mind and contains a balanced blend of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. The product can easily be administered twice a month, from early spring to early autumn, and once a month during the rest of the year. The nutrient blend helps to ensure that your gardenia gets the exact nutrients and the acid levels it need to thrive. Gardeners who use this plant food will find that their plants grow larger and stronger and produce more flowers.

Dr. Earth Organic Fertilizer

N-P-K Ratio: 4-5-4

Dr. Earth’s Organic Acid Lovers product is specifically designed to deliver the nutrients flowers need. It contains a balanced blend of fish bone meal, cottonseed meal, potassium sulfate, feather meal, kelp meal, and seaweed extract, all of which contain a variety of vitamins and help to raise the acidity level of the soil. In addition, it contains seven probiotics as well as endo and ecto mycorrhizae, which help plants become more drought-resistant. Gardeners who use this fertilizer will find that their plants are hardier and have larger blooms.

Best Gardenia Fertilizers

Raising Beautiful Gardenias

Gardenias are well known for the pleasant fragrance and attractive creamy-white flowers. These heat-loving plants are native to tropical regions of Africa, Asia, and Australia. They are not the easiest of shrubs to grow so utilizing the best nutrients possible is important to help maximize your changes of having healthy growth.

Proper N-P-K Ratio

Gardenias absolutely need the right amount of moisture. They are not drought-tolerant plants. That being said, the soil should not be soaking wet as this will lead to soggy roots and potentially root rot. Ideally, you want a well-draining soil with organic matter to help retain moisture levels that the shrub needs. You want the soil to be consistently moist or slightly damp. Do not let the soil dry out completely (but also do not over water).

It is preferable if you can direct water directly to the base of your shrub. I’ve found it much easier to use a soaker hose. It saves me both time and also prevents water on the shrub, which attracts pests and makes it prone to diseases.

If you are planting them, Clemson cooperative extension recommends to plant them during the fall.

Gardenias featured image

Sun-Loving Plants

Gardenias are native to areas that receive plenty of sun and heat. When you are initially selecting a site, make sure to find an area with full sun. It can survive in areas of light shade, but it will grow most robustly with full sun.

The only problem with full sun is that it can dry out the soil faster. Try to cover the roots with organic mulch to help prevent this.

Bottom Line

Again, I recommend buying the Miracle Gro’s Miracid. Don’t make the mistake of buy any average product at your local gardening store. Many of them will simply not produce the same results. You cannot go wrong with any of the fertilizers above. 

Happy Gardening!

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About the author: Carley Miller is a horticultural expert at TheGreenPinky. She previously owned a landscaping business for 25 years and worked at a local garden center for 10 years.

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