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Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Posted by Valdaquende none (My Page) on
Mon, Sep 23, 13 at 16:49

I live in Oregon and, naturally, I keep my 6-year-old plumeria indoors during the winter and move it outside to the sunniest spot I can during the summer. I keep it outside, in its 18" pot, until the night-time temperatures drop to the mid- or low-40's.

Yesterday, during a wind-storm, my plumeria was blown over, pot and all. When I saw it and rushed out to set it back upright, I found that a branch had broken off! The branch is about 12" long and has a 'Y' very close to its end. The branches of the 'Y' are no more than 2-1/2" in length. I'll post some pictures of the tree, the branch, the break and the wound in the mother tree. The picture below shows the wound.

I've done a good bit of reading, on this forum, and wish to thank all of those who have left such good advice for others on this forum. However I couldn't wade through all 329 results for 'broken plumeria', so I am hoping that I can summarize what I have learned here and ask one or two important questions I haven't yet found answers for. Please excuse my ignorance and forgive me if this approach constitutes bad manners on this forum.

My first and most important question has to do with my beloved tree. What, if anything, should I do to treat the wound created by the break? The branch has a kind of knob in the center, which has left a deep hole in the stem of the mother branch; I'm concerned about rot or other damage that could affect the entire tree.
Do I paint it with some substance to keep it from losing moisture and/or introducing rot? That seems to be the logical thing to do (and I've seen several postings that mention it) but I know nothing in this area and wouldn't want to do it if I shouldn't; nor do I know what, if anything, I should treat it with. Can you advise me on this?

Second, I want to root the broken branch, if at all possible. I gather from other forum postings that this is very do-able but I have never done it. My understanding is that I should:
1) Immediately remove the leaves to prevent moisture loss. Should I remove all the leaves or just the mature ones?
2) Several postings suggest cutting a branch into several cuttings. I assume that the tips on the 'Y' are probably too small for this approach; would that be correct?
3) Cut the end of the stem square to its axis and let it dry for a week or so to callus over. Some postings seem to suggest dipping the end in RooTone or other rooting formula as part of the callusing process; which is best?
4) After a week or so, plant it in a perlite/soil mix (mix seems to be anywhere from half-and-half to 2/3 perlite to 1/3 soil), water it thoroughly ONCE, stake it up to support it and then leave it alone.
4a) Autumn is setting in, here but I assume that I should go ahead and try to root this now.
4b) I also assume that I should put it in a large enough pot that I can leave it there, staked up and not watered, until spring.

I have a nice living room window with good southwest exposure to the winter sun ... when it shines (this is Oregon, after all). I have actually had this tree bloom once (and only once) and that happened in December of 2009, when I came home from the hospital after abdominal surgery. (I've always kind of thought that it bloomed out of pity and the spirit of aloha when it sensed my condition!) So it can get enough light to survive and grow, though spider mites tend to become a real problem after months indoors.

Any advice will be very gratefully received and carefully considered. Thanks in advance and thanks again to all those who have left the good advice that has gotten me this far!

Valdaquende


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here is a picture of the broken branch ...


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

This is the end of the broken branch. Note the knob-like shape of the break ...


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

This is the hole in the mother tree created by the break. At its deepest, the hole is about 1/2" deep. The stem itself is about 1-1/2" in diameter.


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

I'm sorry this happened :(. It happens to all of us at one time or another. Here is what I would do based on the time year.

First the cutting...don't cut it up, it's already fairly small and with 2 tips on a short cutting, this time of year, rooting will be a little harder than with a large cutting with a single tip in the spring.
Here is what I would do:

Cut off all of the leaves except any tiny ones right at the tip. Then cut off the end where it is jagged so it is straight across. Don't cut anymore than you have to, just get the jagged part off so it is a clean cut.Dip the end in sulfur or rooting hormone. Keep it in a humid area, no rain or water and let it callus really well. I like to put the ends in barely damp mulch. After a couple of weeks when a nice callus has formed, either bag root it or use a plastic water bottle with holes drilled in it. I like to use Coir and pumice, Coir and Perlite, or Peat and lots of perlite. If you bottle or pot root it. water once then leave it alone until you see several large leaves. Bag root, dampen the mix and squeeze it out.

Give it bottom warmth. If you don't have a heat mat, sit it on your water heater, or anywhere that is warm.

Then leave it until spring unless it begins to rot, then you will of course have to re-cut and try it all over again.

As for the mother plant, this should heal itself. I would keep water off that big cut area until it begins to harden off and heal. Bring it inside where it can't get wet. Put some hydrogen peroxide on it, 50% HP and 50% water is what most use I believe, although I've used it undiluted for years and it never hurt them, then let it dry. After a couple of weeks, I would paint and seal the cut with latex paint, Dap or LET. Usually they heal and there isn't an issue but sometimes they can cause problems during periods of lots of rain and dampness and it's big and deep enough that I would seal it so I wouldn't have to keep worrying about it getting too wet.

Hopefully others will chime in with suggestions as well. One good thing about forums is that you can get many opinions and by trial and error over the years, figure out what works best for you.

Good luck! Your beautiful mother tree will be fine. The cutting, this time of year will be far more of a challenge, but you can do it!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Agree with Powder on her methodology. Either start the callus and rooting process right now or wait until spring if the cutting makes it that long. i have had some start rooting this time of year and not do a thing until the following March.

Good luck with it.


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Before saying anything else, I want to sincerely thank you both, for the time and attention you spent and for the excellent advice! I'm sorry not to have replied sooner; I'm an IT specialist and have been working on the installation of new, digital X-Ray equipment at a local veterinary clinic and it's been both time-intensive and demanding.

I am going to follow your advice. With respect to the broken-off branch, I went ahead and clipped all the leaves except the tiny ones at the tips, to keep the poor baby form drying out. I also cut the stem off flat (perpendicular to the axis of the stem) and will be going to Home Depot to get some RooTone in a few minutes - as soon as I'm done here.

I have a question, powderpuff; you suggested that I use a heating pad; I've never done this. What kind of heating pad would you suggest? Is there one specifically for plants? I'm absolutely ready to get one if it will help.

Also, you mentioned treating the wound in the mother tree with latex paint, DAP or LET; are we talking house-paint here? I'm game if it won't hurt my baby. Last I knew, DAP stood for di-ammonium phosphate, a powerful soldering flux OR, in the world of brewing it is a yeast nutrient (I make meads, wines made of honey, that is). Is that what we are talking about? If so, what dilution, if any, do I use and how and when do I apply it?

I'm off to get RooTone! It would be a blessing indeed to wind up with TWO plumerias!

As I said, mine has only bloomed once but it seems to have been pretty happy here, as the first picture shows. I'd like to get some good advice as to how to feed it, whether I should uproot and store it during the winter (I've seen several posts alluding to this practice in temperate and colder climes) and how to coax it into blooming but those can wait! I've got a baby to rescue!

Thanks Again, So Much! I'll post updates and pictures as time passes, both so that you can see if I'm doing this right and in case others with the same problem come along afterwards who can benefit from your words or learn from my mistakes (hopefully the former and NOT the latter, as I wish to make no mistakes here)!

May the Stars Shine Upon You!

Valdaquendë


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Great info given from above posters..

I would give the same info for your Plumeria.

So sorry for the accident.. Ouch!! I had one new four tipped tree sent I the mail and it broke the same way. I am having good luck with both ends,,,

Dap is the sealant used and found in the paint dept . ( Caulk). it is used for caulking and sealing cracks etc. some like the cedar color so that it blends In with the tree. When applying , just seal it to the very top of the cut and make sure to cover the entire area. I would seal ASAP if it was my tree. You made a fresh cut on the cutting that is wonderful. Seal the area on the mother tree so it is closed off to anything trying to make it a problem area. ( Insects, mold etc.) I have used DAP as well as used waterproof glue. This works well too!!! I use this on my trees and Adeniums when I prune.

Good luck.. If it make you feel any better.. I have started some cuttings here on the east coast using heat mats just today... These mats are seedling mats used to grow seedlings. You can find them In Hydroponics stores and or order them on line. The big box stores usually have them In The spring, but I doubt they have them now since they are putting in Christmas things in there now and clearing up planting items...

Hydrofarm is the brand that I have and I use three mats. I also use bigs rocks on the mats to hold up some of the cuttings placed in the container. ( It is like a dish pail for commercial use)This container is deep and black so it can hold heat from the mat as well as the sunshine . The rocks hold lots of wonderful heat as well and they are placed around the cuttings resting in the bottles or cups to help them keep stable...As well as giving extra heat.

This reminds me of rocks used for the reptiles who like a heat source. I think it helps keep the temps even warmer for the cuttings..

Hope this helps..

Good luck!!

Laura


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Valdaquende - you could always cut off that branch at the break on the mother tree and have 2 babies to root. She would reward you with making new tips on what is left. Just a thought.
Peg


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

I was thinking the same thing as Peg, because the wound in the mother tree is so large and the remaining branch looks vulnerable hanging out there. Plus, trimming it just below the break may result in a couple new branches forming from the leaf nodes there, and an easier tree to move around!

Good luck!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Again, please accept my grateful thanks for your advice and tor the time and energy you put into giving it. It's a new world of thinking for me and I very much appreciate and value it.

Geez, you guys are suggesting that I cut a limb off my BABY?

Actually, I see the logic there; that branch does stick way out to the side, exerting a lot of leverage on the main stem. I would also guess that the big hole in the stem (about 1/2 of the stem diameter at it's deepest), coupled the leverage that the limb, as it grows, will exert, might well cause the limb to break in the future.

And two or three trees is better than one or two. Of course, in the long run, this will mean moving out into backyard myself as there won't be room for me in the house ...

I did paint a solution of 2/3-to-1/3 peroxide-to-water on it to disinfect it. I'm leaning toward cutting off the branch but I must say, it fills me with trepidation; this has been my baby for 7 years now and it's hard to consider cutting it, even though my rational side says its probably the right thing to do.

A couple of questions about the mother tree; is there much risk to the tree? Will I need to coat the wound with something? Where do I cut? And what risks are there for the tree? Is there anything I should know?

And a couple of questions about the cuttings (ulp!). I read and re-read your advice above; again, thanks. What role does light play in this process? Do I keep the cuttings in light or darkness? Does it matter?

I treated the cutting just as you advised. I cut the end, dipped it in rooting hormone and let it dry for two days. Then I put it in a container with the cut end resting in a mulch of dry leaves and needles and grass clippings, etc. The mixture is not dry but it is not damp or wet either. I'm attaching a picture of its current situation.


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

As I said, I reread with interest the advice and comments you have so kindly given me. I wanted to make sure I understood how to start the cutting(s) once they are callused.

The drawing below shows what I believe to be the method you suggest when you (powderpuff, kim2 and loveplants2) describe using a bottle with holes drilled in it. Does this look right? If not, what corrections do I need to make?

Thanks!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Also, I read your description of your cutting-growing environment with great interest, loveplants2; is this what you mean?

Again, thank you all for your obvious care, your advice and wisdom and for the willingness to take the time and energy to help a fellow plumeria-lover! I'll post pictures as we progress, if that's OK; leaves a clear trail to follow (or avoid).


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Hi !!

Looks like you have done a lot of research!! 😀. That's awesome!!

Peg and Jen have mentioned to possibly think of cutting right below the break area to make a clean cut. This is only under the break area to cut cleanly but not to cut at the base of the main stem . This will allow you to have the branch possibly grow new branches in the spring from this long branch. I would seal the new cut end with waterproof glue or DAP after the latex stops bleeding. This usually takes about an hour .

Great illustrations by the way!! 😊

If I see this correctly , do you have holes on the side of the bottle? Is the big container filled with soil or mulch? We usually only cut holes on the bottom of the bottles or cups to root This allows the proper flow of moisture to drain down ... No mix inside of the Main container. I like the idea of this if you had a rooted cutting and you wanted to duplicate pot in pot culture... In a miniature form.

The heat mat goes inside of the container. So that the bottom of the cutting gets the most warmth to maximize the growing needs of the cutting .i would also cut the neck off of the top of the bottle and bring the mix up and keep it compressed to keep the cutting stable

Remember to water once then let it sit and be on the heat mat . You can reevaluate the moisture needs .. You might want to mist occasionally if you feel it needs more. I would keep an eye on it it. Keep it on the dry side and don't move it around. Keep it secure with the rocks. This is a Trick that I like to use when I root several cuttings. It keeps the bottles or cups steady and the rocks help keep the heat around the bottles as well

I would secure your tree with a few stakes or rebar so it will be more stable. It seems too heavy and I would possibly pot up in the spring too! To help eliminate the weight . To help The limbs now, you could cut some if the leaves off of some of the bottom branches. I would stake the tree now to help it be more stable ...

This is impressive at how you are taking a great Interest in the health if your baby!! Great job!!

Plumeria trees go dormant in many different ways. They will tell you when they are ready to rest. Don't be alarmed at the yellowing of the leaves. This is normal. I would leave your tree In It's container this winter and pot up this spring. Let it rest. If you think it needs a little water then give it just a taste once a month Round the rim . I do this too. We have a dormancy period of six months. Some down south have a shorter period of dormancy .

This is just my opinion. Please keep looking for the best ideas that will work for you!!

I hope this helps!!😃

Take care,

Laura

This post was edited by loveplants2 on Sat, Sep 28, 13 at 12:14


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Thanks so much for that advice, Laura; it cleared up a number of questions for me and helped firm up my conceptions regarding bottle-rooting and some other concepts that I was having trouble visualizing correctly.

I had cleaned the wound in the mother tree carefully (with H2O2) but kind of got swept away by other events and demands on my time and resources. And I wasn't completely sure whether I could bring myself to actually cut the branch but subsequent events have impelled me in that direction. I did go get the DAP, though; two kinds. They had "DAP Kwik-Seal kitchen and bath caulk" and "DAP Alex Plus acrylic latex caulk plus silicone; is one of these better than the other? Does it make any appreciable difference?

When I inspected the mother tree, last night, I found, to my horror, that mold was growing in the wound! I'm attaching an photograph of the wound (with the mold or fungus or whatever).

Kicking myself for not acting several days ago, I instantly re-washed it with full-strength H2O2 (3% solution) and resolved to cut the branch, which I shall do later today. I have to leave for work in a few minutes and will cut the branch this afternoon when I get back, but I wanted to make sure I understand correctly everything I'm about to do. I'm going to:

1) Cut the branch immediately below the wound to preserve as much of the leaf-node bearing part below it as is possible.

2) Take the cut-off branch and cut its stem far enough above the wound to have a clean cut, unaffected by the wound, let it dry for an hour or so, treat it with root hormone and place it in barely moist mulch as I did the first one (photo above).

3) Treat the cut end of the mother-tree by waiting for an hour or two to let the latex finish bleeding from the cut, then coat the cut with DAP. (Question: Should I wash it with H2O2 first?)

4) In a couple of weeks, I'll put both cuttings into a bottle-rooting setup. I'll redraw that setup, making the corrections you have suggested, and post it later today to make sure I'm really understanding clearly what I need to do.

Does this sound right?

Thank you, Laura, and ALL of you who have given so freely of your time and advice. I shall put it to good use and will post to this thread as things progress, both so that you can see how it's working out (and correct me if I make yet more mistakes) and so that others following in my footsteps will have as clear a path to tread as is possible.

May the Stars Shine Upon You!

Valdaquendë


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here's how I set my cuttings up after they have callused. I use a 2 liter soda bottle with the top cut off. I use a soldering iron to melt holes in the bottom of the bottle. I tape a stick on the outside of the bottle to tie the cutting to. That keeps it from moving around and braking off tiny roots when they start. I can also pick up the bottle by the stick to look for roots without disturbing the cutting. There are as many ways to do it as there are people doing it. This is just my way. Hope that helps.
Peg

 photo DSC00596_zpsa2fdbb30.jpg

 photo bottle002_zps7cbec528.jpg


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Thanks, pcput; that really helps! I'll be performing the surgery in the morning and in the next week or so I'll make a couple of the bottles. Again, thanks for those pictures; they really clarified things for me. This is all pretty new to me.

I'll post later to report progress or problems, unless that's considered bad forum-manners. Again, thank you pcput and thanks to all of you!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Hi!!

Sounds like you have it under control!!!

I use waterproof wood glue, but I have also used DAP to seal cuts on the mother tree... I will post pics of each for you.

You are right about cutting. Cut below the break with sterile pruners T a 45 degree angle and then cut again on the cutting so that it is free of the nasty break and the fungus. Remember to clean the pruners after each use with rubbing alcohol. Some like a 45 degree angle on the mother tree. I would do this when cutting and then cut the cutting so that it is a flat cutting on the bottom of the cutting to root. If you decide to leave the cutting at 45 degree angle that is fine too !!

Remember to seal only the mother tree cut...

I will also post what my rooting station looks like for you. The heat mat is inside the tubs..

Good luck!!!

Remember If you ever have a middle stem for a cutting and you are not sure which end is up.. The leaf nodes will smile at you if it is in the right top bottom. The nodes will frown if upside down.. Just a thought for some to remember if you ever have a mid stem to root!!! I always have remembered this. Look at the nodes, they are smiling at you!! ;-)

Peg has given you great pics and advise.. I used to use bottles and have now gone to Starbucks plastic cups.. Lol. Or clear solo plastic cups. Easy to cut at bottom to make holes for drainage too.

Lots of good suggestions..

Good luck!!

Laura


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Rooting nursery


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Another rooting area!!

Take care,

Laura


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Dap


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Laura, thanks for the excellent description and photos; they really help! A number of other things are more apparent to me now about the way knowledgeable people grow and handle plumerias; thanks again!

I have a concern about the 45˚ cut. The wound is at the base of the tip that the branch grew out of. I WAS going to cut straight across the base of the child-branch to preserve as much of the parent branch-end as I could. I fear that if I cut at 45˚, I'll be cutting right through a lot of the leaf nodes and the club-end of the parent branch. I've attached a drawing to clarify my description. Is a 45˚ cut right in this situation?

I'm ready to perform the operation; I just want to make sure that I do more good than harm!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here's a picture that is, perhaps, more informative than my drawing.

Does it make a difference which way the 45˚ goes? Should it face up or down or sideways or does it matter? Probably not, but better to ask and look foolish than to fail to ask and look foolish.

Also, is it a good idea to paint the ends with H2O2 and let it dry before applying the glue or DAP?

Thanks again, to you and all, for sharing your knowledge, experience and enthusiasm so freely!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Hi!!!

It's always good to ask...

You certainly are not asking foolish questions.. I think you are asking very important questions and I'm sure this thread of yours will help many growers.. So thank you for your time as well!!!

Always good to clarify and understand what you are doing and I must say, I am impressed at how well you are Interested in doing what is best for your tree.

As far as the 45 degree angle ... We always try to cut any tree with this method to keep the rain and any moisture away from the actual cut itself. This means to keep the cut so that it faces away from the upside. Try not to be to concerned at cutting and worrying about keeping the leaf nodes that are so tight near the cutting. I have cut well below some areas and have had back budding on the branch at the cut tip. So.. To answer the question, Look at the branch and just cut at 45 degree angle where you have marked.

I personally wouldn't put any water or substance on the wound. Let Mother Nature seal it with its own latex ( have the shears clean tho..) after it sets, then use your sealant. Some may use other products, but this is my method. I'm sure others can offer their methods? I just want you to feel good and comfortable cutting and sealing. Once you do it for the first time.. It will be second nature.. ;-) be sure to seal all the way to cover the entire surface of the cut . You want to keep moisture out.

Good luck!!

You will do the right thing. You have it all under control and I'm sure your tree will thank you.

Make sure you do stake that mother tree. It is very top heavy and it needs some extra help keeping it upright. Then pot up next year In The spring and it will really grow well for you!!!

Take care,

Laura


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

You are in good hands with the above advice. Maybe I missed it in the text but would like to say its significantly more difficult to remove a rooted cutting from a bottle which still has the top part on it as in your drawing. Best of luck with it.


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

A word of warning: Please don't use hydrogen peroxide on any cuttings. Full strength HP--like alcohol--acts like a poison if taken up into the wood, so be careful using it on even wounds.


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Well, I've done it! It went to my heart to do it but I believe I've done it well.

I cut at 45˚, using a brand-new and thoroughly-cleaned utility-knife blade. My pruners left a rough, partially-crushed surface that I thought would provide lots of imperfections in which nasty things might hide. The razor-edge of the blade (thoroughly cleaned in Everclear and wiped with a clean cloth) made a smooth, even cut.

Then I cut the wound-end off of the severed branch, trimmed the leaves off (except for the tiny ones on the end) and am allowing it to dry now. In 30 minutes or so, I'll dip it in root hormone and put it in the mulch that the other one is in (see photo of several posts ago). A photo of the branch is below.

I can't tell you how grateful I am for your help and encouragement. Being a bachelor with few social attachments (but more than my share of wonderful friends), I have, perhaps, a more pronounced attachment to my plants than many; they are friends, rather than possessions. And, having had a near-death experience, I am fully cognizant of the miraculous nature of each and every living thing. I've coaxed and cherished this tree for 7 years now and it's almost like a child to me. Your words of wisdom and encouragement have helped me help the tree and, if the fates are good to me, given me two more trees!

As I said, I'll post developments and photos as they occur so that you can correct me as necessary and so that others can share what you've shared with me, starting with a couple of additional photos below.

Again, Many, Many Thanks!

Valdaquendë


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here is a side-view of the cut tree ...


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

And here's the cut branch, trimmed and drying ...


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

The Adventure Continues!

I had dipped the cut branch in root hormone and went in to put it in a container of mulch, as I had the first one (the original broken branch). When I pulled the first one out of the mulch to inspect its progress, I found that the cut end was covered in bugs that closely resemble what we used to call 'sow bugs'!

I immediately cleaned my utility knife blade and cut 1" off of the end and am letting it dry, after which I'll dip it in root hormone. Then, where should I put it? If I recall correctly, sphagnum moss that you buy in gardening stores is sterilized; maybe I should use that.

Here's a picture of the bugs:


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here's a picture of the re-cut cut-branch as it now sits awaiting its root hormone. As you can see the leaf-stubs are falling off but the tiny leaves (and one larger one I didn't remove) look fine.


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Looks like you followed the advise here and did a "great" job. The first cut is always the hardest. You can leave the cuttings just as they are to callus (not put in anything) or some put them in perlite. The mulch they talk about is bags bought at the store not picked up from the ground. That's probably how you got the bugs in it. I never had much luck with it as my mulch always grew mold. There are other substrates to callus the cuttings in but many have been done with nothing at all. I'm sure you will do just fine. "Congrats" on the twins.
Peg


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

HI there!!!

Wow!!!

Beautiful work I must say!!! look at how clean those cuts are.. Are you sure you're not in the medical field? ;-)

Seriously, you have done a terrific job with this whole adventure on how and what to do. Next time you need to treat your trees, it will be so easy for you!!!

Confidence and actually physically working on your tree means more than anything. CONGRATULATIONS!!!

I agree with Peg about that mulch that you had the other stem in. It looked very moist, but I was going to let you try and see what you thought. Everyone has there ways of callusing there cuttings. Some like to use mulch, lots of topics on this, some use humidity chambers, some just use the good old perlite and some just do it the old way and dip in Root tone and leave it on a newspaper and away from heat for 7-10 days. There are so many ways to callus. Jim Little uses Perlie.. Bud likes to dip In Root tone and let callus naturally. Everyone has a different way. You will find what works for you.

I just cut the cutting dip In Roottone and let it harden up and sit for two weeks. Then I pot up to root.

K. Had mentioned about the top of the bottle... As I had mentioned up thread that I cut the tops off of the neck. This is really important to do this because it will be a challenge to get it out. If you do use bottles, cut the neck off of the bottle so that the bottle is the same circumference around the sides. Make it easy on yourself when you decide what to use. Clear plastic cups with cuts at the bottom for drainage work well, since I just turn upside down and gently squeeze the root ball from the cup after it has a nice root system.

I was touched by your story about how much these plants mean to you and I am certainly glad to be able to help you keep your friend happy and healthy!!
You actually gave me chills reading how passionate you are about your trees. It really is a wonderful story!!

My feelings for my trees are the same, they give me the peace that I look forward to when I come home from work... They truly are our friends and I believe most of us here on this forum feel the exact same way you do!! That is why we care so much for our beauties... Most plant people are this way..

So you are In The right place!!! Welcome!!!!

Stake that mother tree.. Keep her happy too!!! Then in the spring pot her up to a larger container so she will not be so top heavy!!!

You could use several stakes In the container now.. if you want to you could remove some of the heavier leaves at the bottom of the tree branches to alleviate the weight from the limbs. If you choose to leave them. Staking will help a lot until Mother Nature starts to shed them naturally for the winter.

Good luck!!!

STRONG WORK I WILL SAY!!!!

wish I had one of those icons to have someone applauding you!!!

Take care,

Laura


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Laura,

Thanks for the praise and for your supportive and experienced perspective and advice. I'm also glad you understood my relationship to my plants (and all living things, for that matter).

I am attaching a photo of the cut trunk; I chose the woodworking glue, since I could use that for other things around the house. I'll also post revised sketches of the bottle and rooting tub.

I put the two cuttings in my utility closet; it is cool and dark in there; is dark OK? The cuttings still have the tiny leaves on the tips; will darkness be a problem for them?

In my zone, you cannot leave a plumeria outside in the winter; well, you can do it once, but only once! After that you have to get another plumeria ...

For this reason, I bring it inside about this time of year; once the nights drop into the 40's, in it comes. It should be OK without stakes, as long as it is not subject to wind, should it not? I WILL use stakes when I put it out next spring!

Also, I have never let it go dormant. I keep it in a window with southwest exposure; it doesn't get as much light as it would like but it it seems to be OK, as long as I can keep the spider mites under control (a difficult task toward the early spring). This year, in the early spring, it threw a flower-spike but the mites killed it. It was SO close!

Is the tree better off if I let it go dormant? I read, on another thread, that one should stop watering the tree, let all the leaves drop off and then uproot it, wrap it in a black, plastic bag and put it in a cool place for the winter, getting it out and planting it in the spring. I like the idea of letting it live all year but I don't want to overtax or jeopardize the tree or make it unhappy.

If I were to uproot it for the winter, could I then reorient the stem, when I replant it, to make the stem more vertical and thus make the tree stronger and, perhaps, less liable to tip or break?

Again, thanks, Laura! I have so appreciated your help and that of everyone who has given it.

J.R.R.Tolkien considered gardeners to be worthy of honor and high esteem in any community. The generosity of the people on this thread and these forums kind of revives one's hope for a human race which often seems obsessed with acquisitiveness, conflict, disharmony and human separation.

Thanks Again! May Starlight Light \Your Way!

Valdaquende


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here is a revised sketch of the rooting station ...


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

And here's the revised bottle (thanks Peg, PowderPuf, Laura and others!) ...


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Hi !!

Everything looks great!!

You have had this beautiful tree for 7 years now... Continue to care for it the exact same way you have in the past. It thrives with whatever you are doing during the winter. I wouldn't change one thing, or its location!!!

The rooting container still looks like you have it filled with soil or mix in your diagram from above? It might be a different method, but I don't fill the container with anything but bottles or cups with cuttings and rocks inside to keep them secure. This is just my opinion. I haven't seen many put soil inside ....

The cuts looks great and I'm Glad you feel good about what you have accomplished!! What a feeling eh?

The bottle looks good In Your illustration ... Peg tapes the stick to the outside of the bottle.. Just to clarify!!!

This is a tough time to root. But it's possible. Don't be discouraged at how long it could take. I would use a light mix.. Maybe half perlite and half cactus mix Instead of anything heavy that retains moisture.

Again, continue to take good care as you have in the past. Don't try and change what you have been doing for the winter. The tree does well for you, so why try something different? ;-)

Just leave the cuttings in another room.. They don't need to go In a closet. Just let it callus for 10 days and then pot up and water once. Remember to keep an eye on the cutting, but leave it alone. The more we move and lift and look makes it more difficult to root. They like to be left alone while rooting. This is why we use clear bottles... We can peek and see what is happening. If you think it needs moisture, mist every so often... But not to heavy with the moisture. You want it to stay dry, but have enough moisture so it doesn't shrivel up.

I hope you have good luck rooting, but don't be upset if it doesn't work this time. We all have issues with rooting, so I don't want you to feel badly if it Does...Remember, even in the summer.. It can take 8 weeks to root or longer. So, it can take longer in the winter...

Take good care and keep up the great job!!!

You Are more than welcome... I do understand how our trees are our babies, believe me!! I love them all... ( probably too much!!!). Lol!!!

Laura


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

I have learned so much in this post! Thanks to everyone, and thanks to Valdaquendë for asking so many good questions. There's great advise here, and not just a great plan, but a beauifully illustrated one, too! A picture is worth a lot.

Good luck, Valdaquendë, with your trees now! Oh, and I've been meaning to ask. What is the flower like that time it bloomed? What did it look and smell like? I want to picture it all. And welcome to the group!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

My apologies, SimiDude, for not answering sooner. I am a man of many projects and have been otherwise engaged for some days!

I am so glad you found this thread informative. The detail, insight and perspective of the gardeners who have so generously advised me in this thread should be useful to anyone trying to cultivate plumeria and I've tried to ask the right questions and provide enough in the way of drawings to make it easier for those who come after.

Later today, I'll post a corrected drawing of the rooting station, omitting the soil between the bottles as Laura suggested.

Being a person of many crafts, hobbies, projects and interests, I have learned enormously from people who have gone before. So I've made a habit of trying to leave the clearest trail in my wake in an effort to help others.

My tree, when it bloomed, was about 10" tall; its flowers were a pale yellow with a white fringe on the petals. And the scent filled the living room; I had just been through a serious abdominal surgery and used to sit on the couch and just inhale the lovely scent. I've always felt that it just felt sorry for me and bloomed in sympathy. I was on serious pain meds at that time but that's what I remember.

I promise to post photos to this thread the next time it blooms!

Again, my sincerest thanks to all of you who helped me; I do so appreciate you all! I'll post updates as time goes by so that you can see what you have wrought!

May the Stars Shine Upon You!

Valdaquende


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

CORRECTION: When I viewed the last post, it looked like I had said my plumeria was 10 feet tall when it bloomed. My plumeria was 10 INCHES tall, when i bloomed, NOT 10 feet!

This post was edited by Valdaquende on Thu, Oct 10, 13 at 13:15


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RE: Need Some Advice - About The Cuttings, This Time

Friends,

Today I am potting the cuttings. I have to admit that I'm late in doing so; a number of events have occurred and I made the mistake of putting them in a place where they were not visible and, well, 'out-of-sight-out-of-mind' ... from now on, I'll put things like this on my calendar!

It has been three weeks since I cut them and their bark appears a little wrinkled (photos below) but they are well-callused and I'm going to try to root them. I found the heating mat that Laura recommended and got a plastic tray, about 4" deep, to use as a sprouting station. I'm using peat moss and perlite in a 50-50 mix, per powderpuff's recommendation above.

I noted that, with the heating pad and sprouting tray, came two packages. One was labelled 'Mykos' and is a 'Pure Mycorrhizal Inocculant' and the other is labelled 'Azor' and is a Nitrogen-fixing bacteria. Should I be using either or both of these? I realize that they are considered to be beneficial to plants in general but are they advisable for plumerias?

I'm going to prepare everything except mixing the soil, so that if you have have any words of wisdom I can act accordingly when I mix and plant.

Thanks for reading and considering this; as always I very much appreciate your help!

Have a Wonderful Day!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here is a close-up of the callused ends (with wrinkles). In looking back over the thread, I realized that I had neglected to put the cuttings in moss. After the bug debacle (see above) I meant to get some but, again, out-of-sight-out-of-mind. I shan't be surprised to hear you say that I've doomed them already ...

Also, after reconsidering the spider-mite problem I mentioned earlier, I decided to move my office furniture around and put the tree (and the cuttings) in my office away from the other plants. Most of my plants live in the living room during the winter but I've had a terrible problem with spider mites on the plumeria toward the end of winter; it cost me a flower-spike this year.

My office gets the best and warmest light (caveat: this is Oregon) and I'm thinking that being away from the other plants (hibiscus, bird-of-paradise plants and peace lilies) may reduce its exposure to the mites.

Thanks Again; Have a Great Day!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

You just inadvertantly reminded me that I have some broken branches put aside for callus as well. I would say your cuttings look to be in reasonably good shape. A bit dehydrated but not decisively so.

I am not familiar with any benefits of the packets you described in rooting Plumeria cuttings. Referencing Jim Little's Book in which he describes beach sand as having certain positive values for rooting cuttings to include being relatively sterile. Perhaps the context does not apply but I would save those packets for another time.

I like using smaller individual containers for rooting because they are easier to keep the rooting media warm. Best of Luck with them.


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Broken Plumeria - An Update and a Question

Dear Friends,

Thanks for your wonderful advice, last October! I wanted to follow-up for the benefit of those who may read this thread and want to know how well your advice worked. I also have a question or two about the plumeria cuttings I started and one about the plumeria itself.

First: The plumeria survived the surgery very well and, in fact, is healthier than it's ever been! The cut branch healed very well and the woodworker's glue seems to have been the perfect thing. You advised me to cut the branch just above a node (so that the node remained on the branch) and that node is now just beginning to show the baby spikes of future leaves. I'm attaching a photo of the branch. Thank you for the excellent advice!

The other questions will follow as separate postings so I can keep the photos with the postings. Again, THANKS!


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About the Spider-Mites ...

As I mentioned back at the beginning of this thread, my plumeria has been plagued with spider mites, which appear each winter as I keep the tree indoors to protect it from the frost. Some years back it threw a flower spike but that was killed by the mites. This year, as I mentioned above, I moved the furniture in my office in order to accommodate the plumeria, thinking to separate it from the other plants that I keep indoors in winter and hoping that the isolation would prevent the annual infestation of mites. This did not work. I also tried spraying with a soap solution, wiping the leaves weekly to try to control them and, finally, Thompson's Wood Oil Soap. None of these worked.

I did a lot of reading, though, and decided to try Neem oil on it. What a difference! The mites were gone after the first application! I researched the life cycle of spider mites and found that they have a fertility cycle of about three days, so I applied the Neem oil again after three days. I have not seen one spider mite since. Two applications were all it took! Here is a photo of my formerly-anemic, formerly spider-mite-infested plumeria ...


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A Flower-Spike!

Now that the mites are gone, the tree has thrown a flower spike and is well on the way to blooming and, having no spider mites to contend with, I fully expect it to bloom for the second time in the 8 years since I started it! I'm attaching a photo of the flower spike. I am SO excited! Again, many thanks for your wonderful guidance!


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About the cuttings

I put the cuttings in a soil mix and container as discussed and shown above, set them on a heating pad, watered them thoroughly ONCE and left them all winter. The have survived, it appears. I am attaching a picture of them. They haven't shown signs of throwing actual leaves but there ARE little leaf-spikes as you can see. A few weeks ago, I noted that THEY had spider mites on them; again, two light applications of Neem oil seem to have eliminated the mites.

My question is, when do I start giving them water? It's been about 6 months now and they look like they could use some, but then who am I to judge? I see no sign of roots on the inside of the container but the cuttings look pretty good and they do have little leaf-spikes on them. I don't know how to proceed. So I thought I'd ask you; how can I tell when to start watering?

Here are a few photos of the cuttings ...


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About the cuttings

Here's the other cutting. It also has tiny leaf-spikes, though I had a hard time focusing them adequately ...


 o
About the cuttings

And here's a photo of the cuttings in the tray with the heat-pad ...


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

So nice to have the update to your tree. "Mom" looks wonderful! Neem oil is good stuff. Your babies have done well so keep up the good work. I'm sure others will jump in. No watering until you have leaves. Although it's showing growth it may not have any roots. You can mist them in the mean time. Our plumerias are amazing being able to grow and even bloom with no roots at all. Do keep us informed and we can't wait to see those beautiful flower pics. "Congrats" Peg


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Thanks, Peg, both for your previous guidance and your recent reply. I didn't realize that they could grow leaves ad blooms without rooting!

How often can/should I mist them? And I assume that I can be sure they are rooting when I see the roots in the sides of the containers and not until?

Again, many thanks to You and All!


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Spots On My Plumeria's Leaves

I recently found a few spots on the leaves of my plumeria. I wasn't initially concerned but they seem to be spreading.

They take the form of small, green bumps on the underside of the leaves. Each bump is about 1/8" in diameter. They are green in color and are attached to the leaf at the edges, much like a limpet. They can be gently removed with a fingernail.

The bump produces a corresponding dimple on the top of the leaf which frequently is pale green in color. I noted that on a number of the leaves affected in this way, there is a kind of clear sap or something that appears as tiny droplets on the leaf surface.

When removed and turned over (so that the 'underside' is visible), there appears to be a 'germ' or something inside it; it looks like a tiny, black speck, sometimes like a dot, sometimes like a tiny line. Sometimes the black 'germ' is larger and takes up much of the bump.

I checked a number of forums and plumie pages but could find nothing that looks like this. I know that things like Black Spot depend upon the condition of the plant and the conditions in which it finds itself, so I'd like to describe mine in the hope that this will help.

My plumeria is growing in a 20" pot in my office. It gets a moderate amount of indirect light and direct ambient light but not much sunlight. I water it every few days with 1/2 gallon of water, always on the soil, and once every 10 - 14 days I fertilize it with Ferti-lome 9-59-8 Rooting and Blooming plant food.

I'm attaching a photo of this phenomenon and will post a few more. Anything you can tell me as to what this is, whether it's inimical to the plant in some way and what, if anything, I should do about it would be appreciated. My first instinct is to re-apply the Neem Oil but I'll await the advice of others with more experience than myself.

Thanks in advance for your advice, as for your guidance and advice up to now!


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Spots On My Plumeria's Leaves

Here is a photo of the leaf top. You can see the light-colored dimples created by the 'bumps' underneath. You can also see the 'sap' or whatever that is on the leaf's surface, though the camera flash makes it look dark in some places. It is a clear, green color in actuality.


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Spots On My Plumeria's Leaves

Here is a photo of one of the 'bumps', which I removed gently with a fingernail and placed on a light-colored background.

If you can tell me what this is, whether I should be worried (my gut tells me I should) and what I can do about it, I'd be most grateful.

Thanks, in any case, for the time and energy you spent looking at this!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Hi, those are bugs, treat infected area with either soapy water or with pesticide. And if anyone has any of these cuttings available, Please let me know, cause I would love one!
whisst


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Thanks for that information, whisst!

I mixed 1/2 tsp dish-soap and 1/2 tsp Neem oil in a quart of water and sprayed the undersides of the leaves liberally with that mixture. I'll report the results when I've had a chance to observe them.

Any idea what kind of bugs these are?


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

I agree with whisst - they are some kind of sucking insect, possibly mealy bugs? Hard for me to tell exactly but they are not supposed to be there and they are up to no good. I would treat with your neem again like you did last time.

Like whisst said, you can also use a mixture of dish liquid & water, insecticidal soap, etc. too.

Similar to what you did last time, you may need to treat twice to get the full life cycle.

You're doing a great job, keep up the good work!

EDIT - I replied after you did, I see you already sprayed, good job!

This post was edited by elucas101 on Wed, Apr 23, 14 at 15:22


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Hi!

Mom looks great!!! The insects look like scale to me so treat like you are...

Cuttings look like there is some activity!! Like Peg mentioned, mist if needed.

Good luck and keep posted!

Laura


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

So wonderful to see your tree and cuttings doing so well--thanks for the update! You can mist three or four times a day on those cuttings, it won't hurt them.

Yes, that looks like scale on your leaves. I use a solution of rubbing alcohol to get them off the branches and trunks, but it's probably not a good idea to wipe on the leaves. Try soaps like the others have recommended. Good luck!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Dear Friends,

The tree in this thread grew from a cutting I brought back from Maui about 8 years ago. I've kept it alive and reasonably well even in this relatively-cold clime, though it has been plagued, each winter, by spider mites. Due to the climate and the mites, it has only bloomed once, long ago.

Then last year the branch was broken that gave rise to this thread and the things I've learned here have helped me make my plumeria a much happier plant. The result is that it is blooming!

In addition, I have two cuttings, both of which are putting out new leaf spikes (though I've seen no roots yet and am following directions until I do).

So I wanted to share them with you, who have done so much to help make it happen. Thanks again for your time and energy and knowledge and encouragement! If ever we should meet, I shall pour a glass of my homemade pineapple mead for you!

Thanks Again and Aloha!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here's another photo


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

WOW!!! Such great news on your blooms, that's fantastic!! Thanks so much for updating us, that bloom is beautiful!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Dear Friends,

My beloved tree is still blooming; it just keeps going and going and going! The cuttings look great as well!

I thought I'd share a couple of pictures of the blooms and a photo of the cuttings in their current state.

I am still waiting for the cuttings to display any roots and I assume that I'll know they're here when I can see them through the sides of the containers. I never lift or otherwise disturb the containers, fearing to discourage them. I am misting them approximately 3 to 5 times a day.

Thanks again for your help and encouragement! Aloha!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here's another photo of the blooms ... I didn't know that the petal tips could assume different shapes! The early ones had the rounded petal-tips you see in pictures and on those ubiquitous decals you see on car windows. But now it's as likely as not to show pointed petal tips. Who knew they could do this?

I know, I know what you're thinking ... YOU knew it! But I did not and, for me, it is one more source of ineffable delight.

Wishing You All the Best!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Here is a photo of the cuttings in their current state. As I said, I'll wait until I see roots on the sides of the containers before I think about potting them. Any further words of wisdom?

Aloha!


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RE: Need Some Advice for My Broken Plumeria

Your blooms are beautiful!!

Congratulations on a job well done,,, I know you are so proud , and you should be!!!

You did everything right and it has paid off.. Patience was the name of the game and you also listened and applied what you learned!!!!

I'm so tickled for you!!!'

The cuttings look like there is activity. Mist only if
You think they are staying to shrivel. Let them get that bottom heat.

Good luck!! You are doing fantastic!

Congratulations on the lovely blooms!!

Laura


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