How to Fertilize Large In-Ground Established Plumeria

hannah82(9b)March 29, 2011


I'd like to organically fertilize a HUGE neglected plumeria growing in our backyard exhibiting some nutrient deficiencies (chlorosis, edge burn). I dare say that it has never been fertilized during its entire outdoor lifetime. However, the soil it is growing in is extremely compacted so digging or tilling-in compost or fertilizer is definitely not an option. Is it possible to topdress compacted soil and still get results?

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Oops! I apologize for forgetting to end the post topic with a question mark. Didn't mean to mislead!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2011 at 6:59PM
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tdogdad(Zone 9)

Yes you can topdress a plumeria. What I would do is get a bag of gypsum from home depot and sprinkle it around the soil and water in to break down the clay. Then I would get some Dr. Earth #8 from Orange County Farm Supply in Orange, if you are near. I would put about a cup in two gallons of water and let it sit for several days (it will really stink) then pour this around your plant. You may want to add some sulpo mag or epsom salts as your soil probably has no magnesium left. You can add a couple of large spoonfuls to the water or just sprinkle around the plant and water in. good luck. Bill

    Bookmark   March 29, 2011 at 8:01PM
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Thank you so much for your valued advice tdogdad! I just bought a bag of gypsum and will be getting started right away!

    Bookmark   April 3, 2011 at 6:14PM
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I thought I'd post an update on that sad-looking plumeria from six months ago.

Well, as tdogdad suggested I sprinkled gysum, Dr. Earth #8 compost tea, and epsom salt, (as well as a bag of earthworm castings for deterring whiteflies) all over the rootzone. It's now October 1, and the plumeria has been nothing short of a flower factory! It's still a profusion of blooms now and I am glad to report that all the leaves are a lush, thick, healthy, emerald green. The beautiful foliage helps showcase the large bouquet of blooms instead of detracting as it did in the past. I have noticed there are also more flowers and BIGGER individual blooms. Now I'm planning to supplement with some sulpomag and more earthworm castings during the fall as the whiteflies are still hanging around (though not as bad as last year).

At any rate, I never thought I could see this plumeria looking this beautiful, and in as soon as six months! I hope to upload a couple before-and-after pics (as soon I learn to do it) so I could show the difference as well as gaining help in ID-ing the plant. I think it's Daisy Wilcox but I'm not convinced of it yet.

Thanks again tdogdad!

    Bookmark   October 1, 2011 at 1:52PM
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labland(Inland Valley CA9)


Congratulations on your success! You can post pictures through either Image Shack or PhotoBucket, both of which have a website, and to use it is free! We want pictures!!!

    Bookmark   October 2, 2011 at 9:52PM
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Thanks labland,

I just signed up with Imageshack and am still trying to figure out how it all works (I'm sort of technologically illiterate...LOL). For the time being, I thought I'd use my pre-existing Flickr account to show some of those before-and-after pictures I mentioned earlier.

Here is a link that might be useful: Flickr Plumeria Set

    Bookmark   October 8, 2011 at 12:07PM
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Hannah, congratulations on the great turnaround! They look terrific.

You just go to the photo page, click on "share" and you should see a box with code in it called "grab the code", I think. Choose your photo size, then click on all that code scribble and copy, then come back here and paste into your text. Flickr is pretty easy.


    Bookmark   October 9, 2011 at 10:29AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hello Everyone,

Congratulations Hannah!!

I know you feel wonderful to see the great rewards from your beautiful tree!!!

Great job!!!

Take care,

Laura in VB

    Bookmark   October 9, 2011 at 8:43PM
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