Plumerias on NY Deck

jane__ny(9-10)August 20, 2009

Growing these for 5 years without a bloom. Now I count 4 inflo's. Whether there's enough time for them to bloom is slim. Two have gotten quite big in the past 2 weeks. It has finally gotten hot here.

If they do bloom, is it too late to repot. They are extremely root bound becoming hard to water. The water runs right out of the pots because there is little soil left.

Jane

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counselor4444(6A NJ)

Congrats on the inflo's! My plumie in NJ is about the size of yours, but no inflo's yet. I hope yours bloom before the warm season is over. Maybe we'll have a long summer? (hoping!)

    Bookmark   August 21, 2009 at 7:08AM
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Dave in NoVA • 7a • Northern VA

Hi Jane, nice plants!

Now, this is where I probably differ from others here. I would say REPOT ASAP to the next size pot! It's much better to save the plant from stress from lack of moisture at the risk of a little bit of root damage and possible loss of inflos. However, if you are careful not to break too many roots in the repotting process, your plants should continue to grow and even possibly bloom -- if we continue to get 4 or 5 more weeks of warm to hot weather. But, once night temps cool down, don't expect the inflos to develop nearly as quickly.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2009 at 9:30AM
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jane__ny(9-10)

Thanks Dave. So you think its safe to repot before it blooms? I am sooooo afraid of losing the blooms because I've never seen the flowers. No tags, have no idea what they are. Today was a thunderstorm and would you believe the bigger one got blown over and blown across the deck. I almost had a heart attack! I ran out, not caring about the lightening flashing all over and stood it up against the deck. The one in the foreground has two info's which have gotten very long. I was sure they broke off, but they seem okay.

I never expected any flowers because they are so underpotted. I've been watering them every day, sometimes 2x a day because they won't hold water and its so hot on this deck. Full sun from all directions.

Thanks for the advice and 'counsellor,' hang in there. This summer has been horrible.

Jane

    Bookmark   August 22, 2009 at 1:20AM
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tdogdad(Zone 9)

If the leaves were constantly drooping I would agree with Dave, but these plants look like they are getting plenty of water and have healthy leaves. If you think they are that rootbound you need to cut the roots when you transplant to break up the wrapping of the roots. This would surely result in loss of inflos and flowers as some shock is caused. Therefore I would continue as you are doing and then after flowering or as they go dormant, remove the root ball, loosen the roots around the outside with fingers, take a razor knife and cut up and down the outside of the roots. Don't worry about some cut off. After transplanting, soak in B-1 and water and then let it slowly dry more and more (less watering) until it goes dormant. Run your finger around the outside edge of the pot making a little ditch. Pour a few ounces of water in this ditch so the center stays dry each month through the winter.
You can also wait until after winter and in March take a saw and cut an inch off the bottom and around the root ball. Transplant and water with B-1. this root pruning allows you to go back in a small pot until the plant is too tall to be supported in the wind. Then you need to learn to branch prune. Bill

    Bookmark   August 22, 2009 at 11:51AM
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jane__ny(9-10)

Thanks Bill. I think I'll wait until they flower, if they get the chance. They are top heavy and the wind knocks them over. I put one inside a large pot with some rocks. The others I propped against the deck. Supposed to turn cool next week, nights low in the 50's. Just my luck...this is a lot of work growing them in the NE.

Thanks again
Jane

    Bookmark   August 23, 2009 at 10:23PM
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Dave in NoVA • 7a • Northern VA

Jane, for the large plants on my deck, nearly all are tied to the railings to keep them from blowing over.

dave

    Bookmark   August 24, 2009 at 10:40AM
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