Rooted and Dismembered Plumeria

fakechuchi(7)October 2, 2013

Hello, all.

I have been lurking here for about a year, trying to decide whether I can be trusted with at least one plumeria. I finally bought a rooted cutting (no balls for rooting it myself). The plant was very well packed but there really is no limit to the thoughtfulness of the USPS and it managed to pre-prune it for me. I am ever so grateful.

I hope you can help me with these 2 questions because I'm really at a loss, the dismemberment was such a surprise.

1. I potted the rooted portion in gritty mix. Should I now water it and leave it alone or just leave it alone?

2. the severed portion looks like it is all of last season's growth. It will fit nicely in my T5HO set up but if it develops any kind of disease, I do not want it infecting the dorstenias and the P. brevicaule that I have in there already. Should I even bother rooting it? If so, would the same winter rooting principles apply (i.e. heat mat, bright light)? Should I wash it with soap, sautee in garlic etc?


p.s. the plant in question is labeled Hot Embers

This post was edited by fakechuchi on Wed, Oct 2, 13 at 13:43

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mksmth zone 6b Tulsa Oklahoma(6b)

hello. that stinks that it broke. Upside is it will branch from the cut and hopefully more than one. More tips= more chance for inflos. dont water again until the rooted portion has a few leaves or the cutting looks be wrinkled. Put it in a bit of light for now. Dormant season is right around the corner for your zone so it may or may not do much for awhile. You may want to seal the cut with DAP or another quality silicon sealant.

Other option if you feel up to it is to graft the top back onto the bottom. Personally I would try it just because I have nothing better to do but you can risk the cutting rotting at the cut if you are not careful.

as for the broken piece. If it more than about 6" you could have success rooting it but I never have with ones smaller than that. Really though you have nothing to loose by trying and you could get 2 plants out of one.


This post was edited by mksmth on Wed, Oct 2, 13 at 22:18

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 5:14PM
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Hey, thanks, Mike. I have not actually watered the rooted part--I'll do that tomorrow as well as the application of the sealant. Should I put it outdoors while it is still warm (ish)?

I don't think I want to risk the rooted part by trying to graft the part that snapped off. So I put that in a smaller pot of turface instead. It's only about 4 inches long and most of that is green. But it's about an inch in diameter so it might just pull it off?

Again, thank you for the information. You might just have saved the life of my first plumeria.


    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 7:17PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Pagan!!

Welcome to the Plumeria side!!!!

Mike gives great advise, but I would water your rooted tree as soon as possible. Since you have it in Gritty Mix, it can handle some water. It needs water now after shipment and since you just potted it up. Place it in indirect light to acclimate it to the sunshine. I'm not sure of the temps at night where you live.. Keep an eye on them tho...

No washing with soap or sautéing in garlic.. LOL. Unless you have plenty of butter!! Only kidding of course!! To funny!!!

If I were you, I would try and root the tip. But it is small and it may or may not root. But at least you can try. This is a great time to post a pic of a break that I had on one of my trees after I received it in the mail.

I was upset at this break , but figured I would try and save both the tip as well as the rooted bottom.

Good luck... I'll post a new thread, it is for you!!! ;-)

I can't get one pic to upload, so I'll post for you tomorrow.

Take care,


This post was edited by loveplants2 on Wed, Oct 2, 13 at 22:34

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 9:35PM
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I think since it has roots you should water it and put it outside in a warm sunny spot. That gritty mix will warm up pretty quickly and help promote the root growth you want before hibernation.

best of luck and try rooting that piece.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 9:49PM
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Hi kms2 (my brain registered that as square kilometers hehe). I have watered the rooted cutting and put the smaller piece in its own pot, hopefully, it will do something. It already looks kind of shriveled.

Hi Laura! Yeah, I've never been to the Plumeria side lol I bet you're not surprised. A person starts with adeniums, it's only a matter of time before plumerias enter the scene. You start with plumerias, and its also just a matter of time before adeniums start coming in.

I learned something about you here though, Laura, while I was researching plumerias---I read somewhere in the archives that the one fool-proof way of rooting plumerias is to send them to you lol

Fingers crossed!


    Bookmark   October 3, 2013 at 3:37PM
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I have to say until now I have never had a problem with the united states postal delivery. I have mailed daylilies, brugmansia, amaryllis and now plumeria to others since the 80's. Never had a problem, as long as I took confirmation and insurance. The last plant I mailed a few weeks ago in a small tube box, had the plant taped, so that it would not be damaged during shipment. The box arrived, it was run over by something, the box torn, and the plumeria in 3 pieces. The person did not want me to file a claim, I wanted the post office to pay. I was upset, and still am. I got up that morning expecting to see a email saying how happy the person was, instead tragic email with pictues, I was in shock. It never bothered me before to mail out a plant to someone, now I will have second thoughts. How does a box get run over in the care of the post office, how does that happen?? Barbra

    Bookmark   October 3, 2013 at 5:07PM
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One thing I would add to all this good advice is you should also contact the seller if you haven't already. They need to know their packing was not enough to protect the plant and should replace it or at the very least offer your money back. I packed for a living and learned through damaged items how to make it better so the box could make it through being played football with. We watched our UPS driver stand on boxes to get to others and Fedex throw boxes into the truck. Can't protect from all damage but can from most.

It will take a lot longer to see blooms if the bottom part makes it as it now has to grow new tips. It is doubtful that the top piece will root but you've got nothing to lose trying. Good luck and let us know how they do.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2013 at 11:23AM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Pagan!!!

Ahhhh... Crossed over!!! lol.. Most of us grow Adeniums too!

Always nice to see friendly people join this forum, so again.. Welcome!!!

You must have read deep into the archives where the writings and ink are running together.. LMAO!!! It must have been an error there somewhere!!! ;-)

You will have no problems with your new Hot Embers ( great choice , by the way!!) like, Peg mentioned.. It will take a little longer for the stems to grow from the new cut main mother tree. I found those pics for you.. I'll post a new thread after I sign off here.

Peg is right, did you contact the seller? Did you show them your pics? Did they offer any help? I certainly hope so, because I know that rooted tree wasn't cheap

Keep it on something warm and give it water every few days.. It's In The Gritty and it can hold up to more water and especially since it was just repotted. Keep it warm, but away from direct sunshine for a week, then let it have the glory of the sun. Did you seal the top of your mother tree? Please do this, so you won't have any issues. If you need any info.. There is a thread about another broken tree that has great info . Then let up on the water and find the right wet dry cycle until you decide if you want to keep it active this winter. I personally would if it is an Ember and it is this time of the year. You have grow lights and I'm sure it will like the light and the warmth it will provide. Don't worry about the tip if it doesn't work. I remember you saying you didn't want it to becomes an issue for your other trees inside, so if it seems like it is turning, I would toss. Focus o. The main tree and keep it happy. Just my thoughts!!!

Take care, Pagan!!

Keep us posted..


    Bookmark   October 4, 2013 at 12:47PM
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Hi everyone,

Aww. I didn't know that about plumerias. Does this mean I might have to wait years to see it bloom? In that case, now I am properly miffed that the top snapped off!

If I were then to keep the plant awake during the winter, are grow lights enough or will it need a heat pad as well? My plant room is usually heated up to 20C in the winter.

I wrote to the seller and told them their Toblerone box and newspaper stuffing was not enough to protect plants they are shipping because it presupposes gentle and careful treatment by the postal system. I think the mailman carried the box under his arm or else tossed it against the wall of his truck or something.

I once bought an Aeonium tabulaforme online and it arrived in a box intended for 4 nursery pots with absolutely no stuffing of any kind. Oh I totally b*tched about that one since they charged me $25 for shipping. I specifically told this particular seller I did not want a replacement and proceeded to describe their incompetence in the best use of the English language as you will ever see lol. They gave me free shipping for my next purchase but then they did it again! It's like they had this policy of giving plants enough room to bounce around in when they ship them. I considered using profanity in my next critique but some exemplars of stupidity are just not worth the sugar, you know?

Anyway, thanks for tolerating the vent! And especially thanks for all the information! I think I will be glad enough if my new plant sprouts at all.


    Bookmark   October 5, 2013 at 6:24AM
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Pagan, I'm sorry that happened to you on your very first purchase! That sucks completely and thoroughly!

The seller definitely needs to know. One of my first mail purchases came in the toblerone box and was broken right at the base--there was no saving the roots. The packing should have been done more carefully to cover rough handling. When you see a well-packed plant, you know it can be done.

Good luck with the base! I'm sure it'll be fine!

    Bookmark   October 7, 2013 at 10:04AM
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Hello everyone,

Just an update on my dismembered plumeria cutting. It survived the winter and I have bumps! I counted about 4 spots where new growth is breaking through. I am not sure if they are leaves or actual branches. It's outdoors now, in full sun.

Thank you, everyone!


    Bookmark   May 12, 2014 at 6:22PM
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Looks great! I'm thinking they will be new little branches. Good job!

    Bookmark   May 12, 2014 at 6:29PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Pagan,

I cant see the pic right now.. But it sounds like the " nubs" will be new branches!!!



    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 12:57AM
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Branches it will be. Great job on nursing it back to a growth pattern.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 5:23PM
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Yay! We have brancheseses


p.s. Oh yeah, that metal-labeled plant you see on the right is my second plumeria. I can't have just the one, can I? I know, I all starts that way lol

    Bookmark   July 10, 2014 at 9:09AM
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This kid really isn't having an easy time of it. I think a squirrel tried to dig it out

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 8:50AM
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tikitropic(10b SoCal)

You need to name that plant 'Mr. Bill' OHH NOOOOO!!!!

Reminds me of one of mine that 'jumped' off the roof a while back.
Yes... I'm a little pressed for sunny space in my yard so some of the collection has migrated to the roof!

Is yours OK? Are both new branches still intact? What ever happened to the tip that broke off from the shipping mishap?


    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 9:55AM
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Mr. Bill it is then!

It could have been worse---a woodchuck could have tried to eat it, and died. Then I'd have to dig two feet deep to bury that behemoth.

The tip did not survive the rooting experiment and fortunately, Mr. Bill here did not seem to notice being de-potted. Both branches are intact, as well as the leaves. Hopefully it won't go into conniptions in the next few days. I really have no clue how durable plumerias are.

I also now realize it might not have been a good idea to seal the top with black nail polish but it was the only thing I had around lol If it ever gets black tip disease, I will not know until it's halfway down the trunk!


P.S. I have adenium seedlings on the roof.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 7:27PM
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tikitropic(10b SoCal)

Glad to hear Mr. Bill is going to be OK!

My 'jumper' is a red that I've been trying to root for nearly a year when the pot mysteriously tipped over near the edge of the roof and the two-tipped cutting was found lying unconscious on the patio.

Now, about a month later it has leaves and roots and everything!

Good luck with Mr. Bill. Just as a precaution it may be a good idea to keep him away from speeding busses, power tools, wild animals, anvils and the such!!


    Bookmark   July 16, 2014 at 12:45PM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Hi Pagan, I'm glad your Plumeria is sure has been through a lot!

I'm quite new to them myself and I'm trying to root a few of then, NO idea if it will root,lol...

May I ask what is the black stuff on the top stump? Is that something you put on the cut or is the color of it once it calloused over? Thank you...Newbie here :o)

    Bookmark   July 16, 2014 at 2:10PM
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Doug, you might have stumbled into the most guarded secret that plumerias need to come crashing to the ground in order to root successfully. I imagine nursery workers flinging them like spears from various rooftops.

Mr. Bill is now surrounded by adeniums. It will not discourage stampeding animals but the idea of a buffer makes me feel assuaged.

Puglvr! Fancy meeting you here. The black stuff on my plumeria is black nailpolish lol I was advised to seal the top off when it broke into two pieces. Wood glue was suggested, as well as other sealants meant to prevent fungal infection. But nearest thing I had at the time was the nail polish so that's what I used.

From the crack on this one (which I should probably reseal), I think the calloused part is somewhat woody brown-ish.

Thanks again, everyone, for helping with my first plumeria.


    Bookmark   July 16, 2014 at 7:05PM
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