Tuesday, December 8, 2009

My Gardenias are Blooming


The first time I saw this Gardenia exist was when I bought the book title Flora Of Malaysia by David T. Jones. I was so excited to find out about Kedah Gardenia or Randa in our gardens. And the scientific name of this gardenia is Gardenia Carinata. And mostly Randa is commonly found grown by the road side along the highways as huge tree.

I saw a tree of Randa flowering at the edge of a forest at my home town Gemencheh, Negeri Sembilan a few years back. If it didn't flower, I wouldn't know that was Randa though. The part that I love about Randa more than the other siblings of gardenias is that the flower changes color from Creamy White to Yellow to Orange in 3 days time. So when they are flowering, the whole tree will have three different colors all over it. Such a beautiful sight to see.

Some other flowers that I found out that has the same characteristic as our Randa here is a Pua Kenikeni tree or Fagraea Berteroana that is native to the South Pacific. But nowadays Pua Kenikeni has become a common flowering trees in Hawaii and the flowers are widely use as Leis and hair adornment.

A few months ago I went to a roadside nursery near my home at Kinrara area and discovered that they have 3 pots of Randa growing among their other bush ornamental plants. I instantly recognize the flowers and bought two pots. Below are the photos of my Randa flowering for the second time since I bought them 2 months ago.

The first day the flower opens, the color is creamy white. Has a very faint smell of Gardenia.

On the 2nd day, the color of my Randa changed to Creamy Yellow. And the shape of the petals start to change and and curl down to a more distinctive shape.

After the 3rd day, Randa will change color to Orange and release a very strong fragrant smell of Gardenia.

This is the most common Gardenia that can be found growing anywhere in the tropical countries. Sometimes the cut flowers are also sold in Flower shops. In Malaysia this is known as Bunga Cina. In Hawaiian it is known as Kiele. Originally this flower came from China.

This is a very rare species of native Hawaiian Gardenia known as Nanu. The scientific name for this is Gardenia Brighamii. I have not seen this gardenia yet. When I was living in Hawaii, whenever I went to the Botanical gardens, this gardenia was not flowering. Nanu is not a common plant grown anywhere as they are an endangered species of Hawaii and kind of hard to grow compared to Tahitian Gardenia or Gardenia Augusta.

This Tahitian Gardenia or Tiare is a native to Tahiti Islands and very common in all the Pacific Islands and also in Hawaii. The scientific name for this Tiare is Gardenia Taitensis. This flower is so popular in Hawaii that it become design motives to a lot of arts, jewelries, fabric printings and household stuffs. I wish I could have brought this species back to KL and grow them here. I bet I could make lots of money by selling the seedlings to the nurseries.

All the different hybrids of Gardenias from all over the world....


  1. Hi!

    I googled for Gardenia Carinata and found your blog! I am hunting for this plant (and also Cananga odorata) for my garden. Would you be able to let me know the exact location of the nursery in Kinrara? THANK YOU!!

  2. Hi!

    You know where I can get GARDENIAS
    in Kuala Lumpur?