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New Plumie owner here...

Posted by tlfox 7b-8a (My Page) on
Tue, Sep 7, 10 at 7:52

Hi there!

I have been reading this forum off and on all summer while watching my very first plumie grow massive leaves. I aquired this plumie at a plant swap this spring. It is 4 years old and about 5 feet tall - unsure of flower color, she had many many and didn't remember exactly what color it was.

Anyway - it has 6 "arms" - three of them have filled in beautifully with bright green foliage. The other 3, however, attempted several times to grow and then just withered and turned black when they were less than 1/2" grown from the nub. I have been watching all summer - now it appears that these 3 are branching and each nub is now 3 nubs with leaves coming out of the side of the branch, just under the nub. Can anyone tell me what I am seeing? Also - it didn't bloom. Is it too late? She told me it should bloom for me this year.

I have it planted in a 24" pot with good drainage. I made a potting mixture from a recipe I found on the plumeria society website. And I feed it with super bloom fertilizer. It's been very dry here this summer, as in no rain, so I have been watering the whole garden twice a day to keep everything from just wilting over and dying from the heat and humidity which is just stifling.

Thank you for any information you may be able to offer. I am so excited to finally own one of these beautiful trees - I want to make sure that I am taking care of it properly so I can enjoy the flowers if and when it blooms. Hopefully I can get the hang of the proper care and then I can move on to figuring out how to propogate it so I can have a forest of them. :D


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: New Plumie owner here...

Greetings Tiffany and welcome!

The dark, withered tips on three of your branches are the result of stress on the plant. It's hard for us to say what caused it, because there can be a number of different causes. Could be the result of cold damage, or root damage, overwatering, spider mites, etc. In most cases when tips turn black, the die-back is self-limiting and the dried tips drop off, while new growths develop beneath them, as appears to have been the case on your plant. This new growth is usually thinner, light green, is soft, and is not mature enough to bloom this season. These new growths may bloom next season as these branches get beefier, so you have something to look forward to!

As to why the remaining three undamage tips did not bloom for you is anyone's guess. Could be they were not mature enough, (they just were not ready) or the plant needed more sun, or stress prevented the plant from forming blooms.

Just keep your plant warm this winter, on the dry side and hopefully it will bloom for you next season!

RE: New Plumie owner here...

Thanks for the info. The lady I got it from told me to just uproot it and put it in the garage for the winter. Would I be better off to relocate the whole pot and tree to the garage (heated) with the other plants that I winter over under grow lights so I do not cause it additional stress? It's a huge pot, but if that is what it needs - then that is what we will have to do. :D

It seems that my plants have taken the place of not having babies in the house anymore...I guess that is what happens kids turn into teenagers and mom is just left to find something else to do.

Thanks again Dave!

RE: New Plumie owner here...

Depends on where you live. If your garage does not freeze, is fairly warm, you have a short winter, and you are in a very damp area (and your garage is humid), you MIGHT be OK to store bareroot.

However, in my opinion, it's safer to just move the plant (pot and all) into the garage. I would do it BEFORE your night temps get into low 40's/upper 30's and then I would probably remove maybe half the leaves and reduce watering.

How much light do you have in your garage and how warm do you keep it? If very low light and cool/cold, remove most leaves and keep fairly dry. If high light and warmer (above 55F), you might be able to keep it growing (abeit slowly) all winter. Still, I would probably remove at least half the leaves. Eventually most may fall off by January, but that depends to some extent on the variety.

If you are able to keep your garage in winter consistently above 55F during the nights with a slight warm-up during the day to maybe 65+, that would be ideal.

RE: New Plumie owner here...

Take it from someone in zone 7. Don't store it bareroot. I tried that for the first time last winter to save space and ended up with tip damage on almost all my plants and I even lost a few. Overwinter it dormant in it's pot. Good luck.

RE: New Plumie owner here...

Dave - my art studio is in my garage. And I have grow lights that I keep on for other plants that I overwinter in there. It is comfortable enough for me to work out there without a jacket - as long as I am not right beside the garage doors. I think I will just take in the whole pot and remove half of the leaves and let it rest over the winter. Maybe whatever stressed it out this year will be done by next growing season.

karyn1 - thank you for the info. This is my first plumie - and from what I am now seeing when I look for them out around town...I have a very large one. It would really break my heart to damage it if there is something that I can do to help it stay healthy.

LOL - you can't tell I have a new love in my garden, can you? :D

Thanks again!


RE: New Plumie owner here...

Hi, guess I'm not going to get flowers this yr. either, but that's something else to look forward to next yr!!
I was wondering about overwintering also, but I thought when stored in the garage, mine probably averages about 50 degrees, that they need NO water for the winter, but some of you are saying a little water during dormancy. So maybe, once a month a little bit?

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