Gardenia problems


I don’t know the name of my plant but the flowers are white and have banana like smell. It was in a shady area outside, I moved the pot to a sunny location(Toronto). All the flowers didn’t open and became dark. It also has some very tiny black insects on the back of the leaves. Please let me know what should I do.


Thank you for contacting the Toronto Master gardeners with your inquiry.

It is difficult to tell from your photo, however based on the leaves the plant in question could be a Gardenia. When growing gardenias outdoors they prefer to be kept in partial shade. Gardenias also prefer moist, but well-drained acidic soil with plenty of organic matter. Water gardenias regularly, even once the plant has finished putting out blooms.

From your photograph it appears that a number of shoots have turned yellow. This could be because you moved the plant from the shade into full sun which caused the leaves to burn. Did your plant experience bud drop? If the plants flower buds fail to open and drop off this could be due to pest infestation- aphids, or from over watering, excessive fertilization, poor soil drainage or very hot, dry weather.

You mention black bugs on the underside of the leaves.These pests could be aphids, however, without a photograph of the pests it is difficult for us to give an accurrate treatment. Can you send in a better photo that provides some detail of the “insect”, that way we will be able to give you the proper treatment. The follwing links give further information on growing this plant: Gardenia Not Blooming How To Care for Your Gardenia Plant, Gardenia Flower Bud Problem

On our website (, we publish detailed responses to many of the questions we received.  Just search our site using the word “gardenia” and you will find several previous posts that answer your question and provide additional details. You might find  Gardenia  of interest.