Pruning Mad Jasmine/stephanotis

Brooke28(7)April 18, 2013


I have been so very busy and have a lot of catching up to do on this forum! I lurk in the darkness and quietly stalk posts :) Such a wealth of info on here, thank you everyone for sharing!

I have a madagascar jasmine that is going into it's 4th summer with me (got on clearance one fall). I would like to prune it but I have read after bloom, preferably fall. It has started some new growth. Do you think cutting it back would stunt it?

Quick history of this guy: He was small when I got him in fall, that summer it took off and grew and had wonderful blooms. The next summer same deal, great amount of blooms and growth. Then I cut a bit off to try to root (with no luck, only using water), well I don't think he liked it much with other factors in play. Last summer he had blooms but not many and the growth was minimal. Leaves started turning yellow and dropping (I know part of this was from my helpers watering) but when cold weather hit the leaves didn't stop, ALL but ONE leaf dropped :( It looks as if one vine is almost totally dead except 1 ft and the other is about half dead, 4.5 ft still ok. The new growth is where the only lonely leaf survived.

I think part is from over watering, using more AC (cause a baby was in the house last summer) and a door that was broken this year causing a bit of a draft has hurt my lil guy. This plant has always been inside and I don't think light is the issue.

Sorry for the book but want to put it all out there. So I plan to do the pebbles this year for humidity. But would really like to cut the dead off. Has anyone done this when new growth is starting? I'd hate to stunt it since it would be nice for him to have some leaves again. Any advice would be great, TIA!

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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

I don't know why nobody has had anything to say. Not terribly familiar with this shrub myself, but in general, shrubs respond to pruning with a vigorous growth spurt. There's never any reason to not trim dead bits off.

Has your plant been in the same soil for 4 years?

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 9:43AM
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botaniphile(9b Tampa)

Stephanotis is a vine. It is safe to remove dead material at any time, just prune back to where the inside is green, preferably to a node.

If your plant has been in the same pot for 4 years, as purpleinopp most likely will suggest, it should probably be repotted.

I would suggest reading this post on container soils. This information has been incredibly helpful for me, since I keep almost all of my plants in containers.


    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 10:18AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Thanks, Botaniphile, 2 thumbs up!

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 11:47AM
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botaniphile(9b Tampa)

Anytime :)

    Bookmark   May 7, 2013 at 1:38PM
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Thank you both for your response!

I was concerned about the pruning because everything I read said to only prune just after bloom, which was late summer. But I went ahead and did it a day or two after my post. My lil guy has steady new growth, I just hope we get lots of blooms this year.

I did repot him two summers ago. Thanks for the link, I'll check it out. Almost all of my plants are in containers as well :)

    Bookmark   May 10, 2013 at 11:13AM
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