Can you please advise me about garden hoses and also my gardenia plant?

Hi everyone,

I’ve recently really fallen in love with gardening. I’ve never in my life had much success in this area, but I’m having some luck this year and this has inspired me to go crazy, of course.

All of my plants are about 100 feet from my water source, so I need a long hose. Dealing with my current hose is such a pain, but it blew apart yesterday anyway so I need to replace it. Does anyone have a favorite type of long hose that isn’t a pain in the neck to use? There are a lot of options out there with a wide range of price so I’d appreciate any help you can offer.

Also, as I said, I’m having a lot of success with most of my plants, but the gardenia is giving me problems. The plant itself is beautiful green with new shoots and quite a lot of buds, but most of them turn brown and don’t open. I did have my first flower two days ago which was glorious! But I want more. The advise I’ve seen is I’m either over or under watering, but how do I know which one? I put my finger in the soil and only water when it feels dry to me, but apparently I’m still getting it wrong. Is there a better way to figure this out?

Thanks in advance for your help.

p.s. It’s going to be 105 here today so hopefully the plants don’t all croak from the stupid heat.

Generally for flowering you want more phosphorus and less nitrogen in your fertilizer. High nitrogen is needed for vegetative (green) growth.

After a lifelong struggle with garden hoses, I have concluded that they are Evil. They want to trip you up, wind themselves into knots, kink to close off water flow and if at all possible drag themselves over plantings to crush them. If you bear that in mind, you will manage your hose situation more practically. On a slightly more serious basis, I suggest not getting the most expensive hose(s), as even the “best” will crap out, and keeping them from being exposed to extreme sun/heat (105F? Where are you?) or being run over by vehicles.

I have a couple of small gardenias that I am trying to maintain in-ground outside their comfort zone here in zone 6B Kentucky. They like sun and good humidity; baking in 100F+ temperatures sounds like a recipe for bud blast - might do better with some afternoon shade. Indoors, gardenias are temperamentally notorious for blasting/dropping buds at the slightest excuse. People bring them home loaded with buds and don’t get to see flowers.

As for watering, as long as your soil drains well and there’s continual moisture (not sogginess) at root level, that should be fine.

50’ contractor grade hose. No, it won’t last forever and it’s a heavy bitch, but they’re the best. And remember, never turn a hose off at the nozzle. Always at the bib.

Get an expandable hose. I got this brand, it seems to be good quality, in its second season. They weigh a fraction of what a traditional hose weighs, and they are so much easier to handle. They spontaneously shrink down to a compact size when not in use.

They make a 100’ one, it seems to be out of stock at Amazon right now.

Three weeks ago, I installed an automatic watering system. The 13mm distributor pipe is more substantial than a normal garden hose and after some thought and a couple of false starts, I now have a permanent water supply for all the plants that need one, just in time for the current heatwave.

There is a timer, currently set to ten minutes morning and evening, and the water is delivered to the roots rather than the foliage which reduces losses due to evaporation, and “burning” due to the magnifying effect of droplets on foliage. It also is a far more economical use of water.

Of course, I will have to drain it out before the first frosts, but that is a minor problem compared with the old watering can or hose.

Hoses are indeed evil. Buy the best/heaviest you can afford, buy the best attachments you can afford (all brass), and save up for an excellent hose reel. Eley is the brand you want. A hose reel that actually works will substantially mitigate the devilry your hose will get up to.

I have never lived in a climate a gardenia would survive in, so can’t help you there.

Thanks for all the help guys.

Light, no kinking and impervious to coyote bites. It’s also available in 25, 50 and 100ft versions. The main criticism seems to be that it restricts water flow/pressure, but if it does, it is not significant or even noticeable. This would likely be the last hose you ever need to buy.

I ran pvc out to my garden. It only needs to be about 6 to 8 inches in the ground. I drain it in the fall. It doesn’t freeze.

No special tools need. Pvc primer and glue. You need a short piece that connects to a pvc valve. To connect at the house you need a hose adapter. I use a short 10 ft hose to connect to the faucet on the house. I didn’t see a need for a permanent connection.

The home depot people can help you with the connectors. I had mine in the ground and working in a few hours. Its so much easier to use compared to a long hose.

20 ft is $12 need 5 for 100ft

Do you have a cite for this?

Probably a whoosh but…
5x20=100 last time I checked. I know the arithmetic is obvious.

That style pipe has a flared end and is made to slip together without couplers. I used regular pvc pipe and bought pvc couplers. Mine has more glued joints that could leak. I assembled and tested it with water pressure before putting it in the ground. Anyone that did Lego can put together pvc.

Anyway, I was making the point that the cost to use pvc isn’t much more than buying a good quality 100ft hose.

It’s in the ground and out of the way of the mower. I never have to coil it up and put in the shed.

I rigged mine up almost a decade ago and it still works well. I hook it up to my house faucet every spring and disconnect it & drain in the Fall.

I’ll second this! Some of them don’t last very long, but they are so much easier to work with than a big, heavy rubber hose. I’m on summer 3 with the one I have now. AND it was outside all winter.

I invested in heavy, black rubber hose after some vinyl failures including a fist-sized bulge with a pinhole spraying, sort of funny. It’s Craftsmen and I bought it at K-Mart.

An unexpected downside: the water already in the hose will be scalding hot after sitting in the sun. Some reviews say it can leave black marks on things but I haven’t noticed that.

They’re great until they spring a leak. We’re careful with them, but after a year, maybe two, they’ll spontaneously spring a leak.

I was skeptical myself, but I have had no problems with mine two seasons in. Even if it doesn’t make it to a third season, $20 a year is easily worth it for me, they are just so much easier to use.

My mom has a gardenia that’s 50+ years old. I know it can be a little bit finicky. I know that she regularly prunes out the middle of the plant, claiming that the increased airflow is good. She also re-pots it every few years. In the summer it’s on the back porch mostly shaded, only getting a little direct sun after about 6pm.

This is in the northeast, so it never sees 100deg temps. Obviously it comes inside in the winter. I hope you can figure out your plant!

Also, the stretchy coil hoses are nice and light, but I’ve never had one last more than 2 years.

My gardenia is up to 4 flowers now. Yay! But they don’t seem to have a ton of aroma and they don’t last long in this damn heat. But at least I’m getting some flowers

I did end up with an expandable hose and even if I have to pay $50.00 a season, it’s worth it. So much easier to deal with.

Thanks again all.

Down in our barn we have a hose for filling buckets and washing horses. If I buy a cheap hose , it lasts a couple of years. When I buy the expensive contractor-grade hose it feels nicer and the connections are super secure, but it lasts about two years.