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leaf drop/what season is it?

Posted by mrpearson253 soCA (My Page) on
Wed, Dec 27, 06 at 15:42

Hi All!

My plumeria don't seem to know what season it is! (And neither do I). This southern California "winter" has seen drops down into the 40's at night up into the 80's during the day. On Christmas Day at my father's house I wore shorts and flip flops!!! Only in Southern California!!! They forgot the lights on the palm tree this year...

But back to plumies! Most have dropped between some and most of their leaves, but one is holding on to them. That one's leaves are still quite green and springy. Should I just wait and let the leaves drop on their own, or should I help a bit? This is the same plumie that took about a month this summer to acclimate to being in the ground, as opposed to being in a pot.

Thanks for any help you can give...warmest (and most flowering/branching) wishes for 2007!


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: leaf drop/what season is it?

It appears that the west coast weather is as odd as the east coast. It was up in the 60's the weeks prior to Christmas and our normal highs should be in the low 40's. Many of my plumies held on to their leaves for the longset time. The last have recently finished dropping their leaves. If the leaves look good just leave them alone. If they are yellowed or curling you can cut them off leaving a bit of the stem to drop on it's own.

RE: leaf drop/what season is it?

yes the weather has been strange in So. CA.. Down to the 30's a few nights, ice on the plumies the next morning, pure panic. Christmas day in my area in The San Fernando Valley was 80 degrees! Now we are having 40 plus mi. winds, I am losing leaves in that one, down to high 30's at night..I don't know what this does to plumeria. I have a couple plumies that have one leaf. Most are green, strong, some not great looking. Soooo I am leaving them alone. If it gets warm, will check and water. The ones protected on the patio, don't show any far!!!!! I am new to this..hope all make it.
Karen B.

RE: leaf drop/what season is it?

A basic rule is "got leaves-needs water; no leaves-no water" When a plant drops some of its leaves cut back on the water. Think of the leaves like straws in a water glass. If you have 20 straws and hot weather, you need ample water. If the weather cools, cut back. If you have 10 straws(leaves), cut the water in half.
One straw=very little water. No straw, no water. If your plant is in a dry environment (like in a heated house), a cup of water each month or spritzing the soil surface weekly keeps the roots from desicating. Roots sitting in water without the means to remove the water creates a root rot that moves into the stem and kills the plant. This is why plants in the ground do best in raised beds or containers where gravity drains away the water. I feel young plants in the ground at ground level need to be protected from rainfall. Karyns advice is correct. Make sure the cut stem part is removed after about a week or it can rot and begin a rot invasion into the stem. Karen B. I just move my bare stem plants under an overhang and forget about them until March. They do not need water or sun outside, but they need to be where a frost connot settle upon them. Happy New Year.

RE: leaf drop/what season is it?

Hi Bill,
Perfect.. printed your message out. Answered every question I had, so far, ha. thanks, can pull it together. So far no bare stems, will keep checking, then will handle them as advised on patio plants protected.
Happy New Year to you too.
Karen B.

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