Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Gardening & Gardenias (Real and Candles)

Gardenia Standards

So, this is garden week here at CCC. I have finished designing my front yard renovation and my gardeners will be removing all the old shrubs and planting the new ones this weekend, and will also prune my twenty odd palm trees, my hedges, and mulch the entire property.

I spent the day yesterday pruning all of my many topiaries, called 811 to mark my underground utilities before we dig, and took a little trip to Home Depot where I found a gorgeous pair of Gardenia standards "Aimee."

Huge 4-5" double blooms are intensely fragrant! Aimee Yoshioka is the largest flowered of all Gardenias with large, glossy, dark green foliage on a vigorous and moderately fast growing evergreen shrub. The large dark foliage provides a wonderful foil for the large white flowers. Easily trained into a tree standard. Aimee is also considered to be one of the largest growing Gardenias, particularly in mild winter climates where it is known to reach 10-12' high but 5-6' may be more typical.

These old garden favorites are still commonly referred to as Cape Jasmine or Cape Jessamine in many southern gardens but no matter what you call them the fragrance of a Gardenia is unforgettable.

Gardenias perform best in a fertile, well-drained, humus rich, acidic soil with average moisture. They seem to do best in hot southern regions where they get some midday or afternoon shade but need good light for the best flower production. Provide your Gardenias with good air circulation to minimize pest infestations. In the northern most reaches of their range they will benefit from protection from cold, drying winter winds. Gardenias make good container plants and can be enjoyed indoors where not winter hardy. Prune after flowering.

Here is the bloom.

Gardenia Aimee

Gardenia Aimee

I have not decided yet if these will go in the front garden, but I do plan to use them in a pair of blue and white Chinese fishbowls. The gardenias are in bloom and the scent is amazing.

And in spite of spending six hours gardening in the South Florida heat yesterday, I feel great! I think I am in the best shape of my life. My gated community has golf, tennis, swimming, pickle ball, a fitness center, biking, walking, and you can enjoy these 365 days a year. I love it. Truly living in paradise.

I also love a great gardenia candle for filling my home with this intoxicating scent. Here are my top picks. Click on the captions to link.

I like this one because it combines gardenia with tuberose and jasmine.

Williams Sonoma White Gardenia Candle

This huge candle has a 160 hour burn time and a very reasonable price and smells fabulous. 

Village Candle Gardenia

I am a big fan of Voluspa candles for their beautiful containers, wonderful fragrance, and clean burn.

Voluspa Yashioka Gardenia Candle

For a splurge candle, I love Diptyque. Pure luxury, this candle has great throw and lasting power and smells like real gardenias.

Diptyque Gardenia

BTW, I know many of us are big fans of Seda France candles. Unfortunately, I found that their gardenia candle has hardly any scent at all which defeats the purpose of a scented candle, right?


  1. My mother planted gardenia shrubs underneath my bedroom window when I was a child, so I grew up with their heavenly scent as I drifted off to sleep each night during the summer months. I'm happy to see you will have gardenias in your garden.

    1. I already had two next to my lanai which is of course all screened and love the scent.

  2. Congratulations on getting your gardening projects accomplished. Those gardenia standards are just gorgeous!!! Gardenias are beautiful, and their fragrance is intoxicating. They were my late mother's favorite flower. In honor of her, I planted two gardenia bushes in my garden. I thought I prepped the soil and picked the right location - morning sun and afternoon shade - but sadly, they didn't make it. I think the hot summer sun here in CA was just too much for them. However, you've inspired me to try again. (Hopefully I can find two standard Aimee gardenias.)

    One of my favorite perfumes, or fragrances, was Cartier's So Pretty, which had a hint of gardenia. Unfortunately, they discontinued it.

    Thank you for this pretty and fragrant post, Beth.

    1. I think in hot climates like ours with intense sun they do better more protected. I already had 2 gardenias outside the lanai which is shaded by live oaks and palms and they like it.

  3. I would put them as close as possible to your home so that you can smell that heavenly scent all of the time!

    1. I agree - I already had 2 next to the lanai and the smell is so wonderful.