What I learned growing Plumerias In 2012
Hello fellow plumerians. Today I welcomed and smelled my first flower of the 2013 growing season and as always it was Aztec Gold ( my most cold tolerant plumeria). Peg you should see that tree now! I learned new growing techniques in 2012 that resulted in over a hundred of developing 2013 inflos in a variety of plumeria species I've collected over the years.
My six favorites are Singapore (my least cold tolerant plumeria), Rainbow Moragne, Makaha Sunn, Ember, Scensation and Kapalua. They are no longer plants but trees. My two Mary Moragnes are over well over 12 foot. And that's precisely why I spent part of this winter and early spring thinning out some of my duplicates. It was a bittersweet experience but I got to meet some wonderful people and developed really cool friendships during the process.
My fertilizers of choice are Spray N Grow, Dyna Grow 7-9-5 and Dyna Tek. I saw significant growth improvements with Dyna Grow. All three worked extremely well for me last year and I'm sticking with them again in 2013. I don't use any insecticides and use mainly worm castings to drive off pests. A tip that Bill gave me few years back. It still works!
What I'm especially excited about this year is gritty mix. I'm always open to new growing techniques and thanks to a kind donation of gritty mix from a very good friend, I gave it a try on her recommendation. First I washed the roots completely clean of all previous growing medium. I then aggressively pruned the roots. With a big sigh..I planted one of my prized posessions in the gritty mix about six weeks ago. I held my breath and today the plant has very healthy looking leaves and ten new inflos. I also noticed the developmental growth rate of the gritty plant has exceeded my other similar sized potted plumerias. I will keep you posted on my experiment. But for right now.... the mix is working....quite well! Thanks LJ!!!
Last thing, I live in Tampa and we had a very mild winter however there were a few nights temps dropped low enough for frost. I was too lazy to cover my plants( major ordeal) and felt confident they would pull through. The only damage I had was to the tips of my Singapores. Frost damage on 90% of the tips on each of my five trees. However, the healing power of Mother Nature is awesome! On each of the damaged tips....what was once one branch are now an average of five brand new growth shoots. Might not get as many flowers this year but I'm already looking forward to 2014!
Happy Earth Day and have a great 2013 growing season...Manuel