How To Grow Gardenia From Cuttings: Gardenia Propagation

The article shows how to grow a gardenia plant from cuttings at home in a simple way. You will learn when to take gardenia cuttings and how to root them with and without a rooting hormone. Follow the step-by-step instructions to successfully propagate gardenias from cuttings and enjoy the satisfaction of making new gardenia plants, as I have made in Australia.

Growing Gardenia Plant from Cutting
Growing Gardenia Plant Grown from Cutting

Propagate Gardenia

Propagating gardenias from cuttings allows you to multiply these exquisite fragrant shrubs and share the joy of gardening with others.

The most common and effective method of growing gardenias is through cuttings, although they can also be propagated from seeds and layering. The gardenia fresh stem cuttings can be rooted in either soil or in water.

The first important step for gardenia propagation is to select a gardenia plant and take cuttings. Look for a gardenia plant that has good green color foliage and is free from diseases and pests.

When to take gardenia cuttings: Take gardenia cuttings in early spring from new growth.

Select newly grown healthy stems and take 4-6 inch long just below a leaf node using sharp disinfected pruning shears or a knife, or just twist by hand.

Prepare Cuttings: Remove the lower leaves of the cuttings, leaving only a few at the top.

Rooting Hormone: You can propagate gardenias without rooting hormones, but you can use a rooting hormone to encourage root development. I use aloe Vera gel, which is the best homemade rooting hormone for gardenia cuttings. Just cut an aloe Vera stem and use its pulp/gel.

Growing Gardenia Cuttings in Water

Once you have prepared the gardenia cuttings, you can root them in water. The gardenia cuttings will easily take roots in water in a few weeks. 

Simply dip the lower cut end in water in a glass, 1 inch deep and place it in shade. Change the water every few days and you will see root growth in a few weeks. Transfer the rooted gardenia cuttings in free-draining soil when they grow strong roots.

Growing Gardenia Cuttings in Soil

Planting Cuttings

  1. Take a small pot having many drainage holes.
  2. Fill the pot with well-draining potting mix. The potting mix can be a mixture of garden soil and river sand or perlite. Do not mix any fertilizer.
  3. Water the soil well and place aside to drain excess water.
  4. Make a hole in the soil with a stick and insert the prepared cutting into the soil, ensuring it is planted more than one inch deep. You can plant more than one cuttings in the same pot. Do not water again.
  5. Make a Mini-Greenhouse: Cover the pot with a plastic bag to maintain high humidity levels.
  6. Place the pot in a bright warm location, but not direct sunlight.
  7. Open the bag after 1 week to mist the cuttings to keep the soil moist, if dry.

Rooting Time: The question is how long it takes the cuttings to root. The gardenia cuttings will take 4 to 8 weeks to root, depending on the temperature and quality of cuttings.

You can check for roots by gently tugging on the cutting; if you feel resistance, roots have likely formed.

Gardenia cutting rooted and new leaves and flower grown.
Gardenia cutting rooted and
new leaves and flower grown.


Once the cuttings have developed a healthy root system, transplant them into larger pots or directly into the garden.

Water the young plants regularly to keep the soil consistently moist.

Gradually acclimate them to outdoor conditions before transplanting them into the garden. First expose the new gardenia plants to morning sun for at least 1 week, and then to half a day and finally to full sun.