Plumeria seed pods splitting open...what to do?
Hi all! I'm fairly new to the forum so this is my first time posting. I have a couple questions and any advice is greatly appreciated.
First, a brief (maybe not so brief) history. Two summers ago I purchased three plumeria trees from a local nursery, having absolutely no experience with them and questioning whether they would thrive or even survive the hot, dry summers we experience here in the desert. (I live in Twentynine Palms, CA. Summer days here usually hang around 115 degrees
And often reach into the 120s) To my surprise they have done very well. They spend their summers on a large north facing partially covered patio in the shade where they can get their morning sun and be shaded but receive reflected/filtered light from the blistering noon and afternoon sun. They have grown about a foot in height since I brought them home, and have bloomed every summer and even some earlier this winter.
Usually I overwinter them in the garage, but this year when it started getting too cold for them to be outside(mid-November), they seemed as if they didn't want to rest, and instead just kept pushing out leaves and blooms, so I brought them into my kitchen. One of them started dropping its leaves and I figured it was going dormant, until I noticed some webbing and spots all over the leaves, which to my horror I learned was a red spider mite infestation. I pulled all the leaves off after a failed attempt to wipe off the pests. Now the tree is bare and appears to be dormant. My other tree on the other hand, has no sign of infestation, and has even added almost a full inch of growth on the stems and several new leaves, since bringing it inside.
So here goes the questions (for anyone that is still reading, I apologize for the long-windedness)...
1. I noticed sometime around mis October that one of my trees (which happens to be the one that is still growing and pushing out leaves) had seed pods growing on them. I've read that they take about 9-10 months to mature. They likely were there longer seeing as how I was quite neglectful to my plants for a couple months. Well, the seed pods have begun to split open, and I have no idea what to do. I saw somewhere online about wrapping cheesecloth or pantyhose around the pods to catch the seeds, but I have neither. I also saw you can cut the pods off and place them in a paper bag, but I am wondering if it is too early for that. What do you recommend I do?
2. I see all of your plumerias on here have large clusters of flowers, and I'm jealous. Mine will push out about 3-4 blooms at a time, and the blooms seem to fade very quickly, lasting about a week at the most. After those blooms have faded more are pushed out in succession afterwards, and I suck at keeping records so I'm not sure how long this goes on for, but I believe it lasts a good chunk of the summer. I guess my question is this....how long are the blooms supposed to last before shriveling up? I never have a problem with them shriveling before they open, but I wish they would last longer while they are open. Is it because they aren't getting enough humidity? And how can i get my tree to bloom more profusely? Also, you should know I never fertilize. I think I did once this past year. I know, bad me. I know they are heavy feeders, so I'm guessing I should start fertilizing, but when would be a good time? Should I start fertilizing now?
3. At the bottom left of my picture, there is a newer leaf that is oddly shaped. Every once in a while I get leaves like this. What causes it? Is it a pest, a deficiency,...?
Again, I appreciate any advice thrown my way.