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wildcat_in_z5

Planted my large Plumeria

Wildcat_IN_Z5
18 years ago

Hello all,

I thought I would post a picture of my large plumeria I planted this week into my garden.

I have 5 big brugs and a large plumeria in my yard planted raised bed gardens. I dig a large hole in the raised bed and sink the plumeria's pot into it, keeping garden surface and the dirt in the pot surface the same. Then I cover the pot surface with the same wood chip mulch in my garden.

I am in NW Indiana Zone 5, so they only spend about 5 months in my gardens.

The plumeria is the only one I leave in a pot as it suffers more when you disturb the roots than the brugs. Plus, it needs less water than my brugs.

The plumeria was in an 18" pot but I repotted it into a 24" pot (they type that you buy trees in) as the plumeria is now 7 feet tall and has 24 tips, some of the tips have the beginnings of flower tips. 4 of 5 of the brugs are 7 feet tall as well.

Last year in the 18" pot, I could not really keep it watered enough.

I did go to a hardware store and buy some large hollow drill bits so I could drill some more holes in the pot. I used the 1 1/2" drill bit. This 24" pot had about 8 3/4" holes on the sides right at the bottom. (But no holes on the bottom itself...which is very good. If you sink any pots into the ground, you do NOT want any holes on the bottom of the pot, only on the sides!!! If you pot has holes on the bottom, seal them up! NEVER have holes on the bottom of any pot you sink into the ground!)

I enlarged the original holes to 1 1/2" and then drilled 8 more, centered between them but about 4" higher.

Since the plumeria is such a fertilizer glutton, I mixed a whole bunch of Osmocote Vegetable and Bedding 14-14-14 in with the soil, 1 1/2 lbs.

When it flowers, they are yellow-white that smell wonderful. I have grown this one from seed and is now 9-10 years old. Unfortunately, the seeds I purchased were supposed to be for a red flower. Oh well...

Wildcat

{{gwi:1157771}}

Comments (33)

  • wanna_run_faster
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I just purchased some plumeria seeds from Barry.ng...I'm hoping they turn out as beautiful and healthy looking as yours!

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wanna_run_faster,

    Good luck, I hope yours do as well...or better!

    If I remember correctly, it took a long time for mine to germinate. I cannot remember if I scored the seeds or not to speed germination as it was a long time ago.

    Wildcat

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  • Dave in NoVA • N. Virginia • zone 7A
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wildcat,

    Thanks for your report and photo. I do the pot-planting thing for my brugs, too. As soon as roots grow out the holes, they are anchored and won't tip over in the wind. Easy to dig them up in the Fall as well. I might try pot-planting more of my plumeria this summer.

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hello Dave_in NoVA,

    Yes, you are correct. When the roots grow out of the holes, it really anchors them. That is exactly why I mentioned to have only side holes instead of bottom holes.

    When you go to dig them up, with side holes, you can slide a flat spade down the side of the pot and cut them off fairly easily. But with bottom holes, you have try to get the shovel under the pot to cut the roots. And when you have a big pot like I have done, 18", 24", etc., it is nearly impossible to get under the pot without making a crater in your garden, or spending hours on your dig up. Very frustrating. Believe me, I know...LOL!

    My brugs really respond well to being out of the pot and directly in the garden. You can see some pictures of my brugs on the Brug Forum, under the thread, "Picture of my white Brug".

    Wildcat

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    To all,

    I just checked my plumeria above and 15 of the 25 tips have an inflorescence on them!

    Wildcat

  • pharoah
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wildcat that is amazing news!! What variety or color are the flowers??

    Did these inflos just appear?

    Tony

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hello Pharoah Tony,

    They will be yellow in the center and white on the ends of the petals...probably a common type? The seeds I bought many years ago were for red flowers...only 2 of the 5 seeds sprouted and one of the plants did not survive the it's 3rd year.

    Obviously, they are not red...and it took about 5 years to get them to the size to flower with our short growing season.

    I fully recommend for people to buy rooted cuttings or better yet growing plants as opposed to seeds or even fresh cuttings. They may cost a little more, but they also will grow much faster and flower much sooner too.

    Some of the inflorescence where there when I planted the pot a month ago and they stick out about 4" now, others are just poking out at the tips. Although it is hard to see the tips as the plant stands over 7 feet tall.

    I am at a loss of what to do this winter as I believe it will be to tall for the automatic netting in my friends greenhouse this Winter. I'd sure hate to cut it back as next year it should be phenominal...won't be too much of sloch this year wither...LOL!

    I am pretty proud of it for growing her up this far North.

    Unfortuanately, my big brugmansia's get much more attention than my plumeria does.

    Wildcat

  • chanbr
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I asked this question before, but I don't think I got an answer.

    Is Cutting the roots not going to kill/damage the plant?

    Thanks,
    Chanbr

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hello Chanbr,

    I do not see that question on this thread.

    In my opinion, plumeria's do not like to have their roots disturbed. That is why I have them in a large pot that I sink into the ground as opposed to planting them directly into the ground.

    So, when they are dug up, I am only cutting the roots that have grown out of the holes in the pot as opposed to cutting through and damaging much more roots if it was planted straight into the ground. The majority of roots will remain in the large pot.

    I have not had mine suffer from trimming off the roots growing out the holes in the pot. (Remember, if you sink the pots into the ground, do not have holes on the bottom, only on the sides at the bottom and above.)

    The additional benefit of more large (1 1/2" diameter) holes in a large pot (in this case a 24" diameter pot) is that with the pot sunk into the garden, I cannot tell (for sure) how moist or dry the bottom of the pot is. Since plumeria are prone to root rot when soggy, the extra and larger holes in the pots will drain out any extra water into the surrounding soil thereby reducing the potential problem of overwatering and root rot.

    And with that said, plumeria's also do not like to dry out either especially in the hot Summer sun as the first sign is the flower buds drying up and falling off. When this happens, it's wait until next year for flowers. Bummer.

    Now, of course, during the cooler Winter months while dormant, the soil can and should be very dry.

    My plants are planted in raised bed gardens and the surrounding soil the pot is sunk into is very good.

    However, if you are digging a hole in a very hard or clay soil, you should dig your hole a little deeper and about 6"-12" out around the diameter of your pot. Buy some good potting soil (you'll need quite a bit), layer 4"-6" in the bottom of the hole, set your pot in, and fill around the sides with the potting soil as well.

    This will allow for drainage out of your pot from overwatering and heavy rains. Plus give room for your roots to grow through the holes on the sides.

    If you did a hole in a clay soil only the size of the pot you risk the clay hole acting like a cup and holding the excess water in drowning your plant.

    This would be like sinking a large pot without drain holes.

    Oh, another thing to remember is when you place the pot into the ground, make sure there is a little tapered mound of dirt/potting soil in the center of the ground under the pot to be placed so it will push up the center bottom of your pot. This helps keep the bottom if your pot level or even a little concave, so when it is dug out, it will sit level on the ground.

    Most times, when people dig holes, the center is deeper than the edges.

    If you are sinking a big pot, say 18"-24" or larger and it is placed on top of a hole where it is deeper in the center, the pot bottom will form to the hole with its center bulging down.

    Then when you dig up the pot, it is convex on the bottom, or rounded if you prefer. And now, your large 6-8 foot tall heavy plant and pot you just dug up will not sit level with a rounded bottom and keep falling over unless tied up to something stout.

    If you have any more questions, feel free to ask.

    Wildcat

  • kukini
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Lovely looking tree.... makes my heart beat faster

    someday.....

  • chanbr
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hello WildCat:

    I do have more questions. If my plumeria keeps growing bigger and bigger in the pot, do I keep getting a larger pot for it? Or should I cut it, so it will stay at a certain height? That way, I can use the same size of pot for a few years. For example, I like the size of your plant (the picture you put up here), how do I keep that size forever? Keep cutting off the branches that are too tall?

    Thanks,
    Chanbr

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hello Chanbr,

    By the end of Summer, my plant should be around 8 feet tall. It is in a 24" diameter pot so this is a two person pot.

    Last year at 6 feet the 18" pot did not seem like enough pot for it.

    You have to base your desired size on if you need to move it indoors for the Winter, the size of your door opening, height of the ceiling, etc.

    In the past, I have trimmed a branch or two right at the node.

    Personally, I do not know the best or correct way to trim plumeria.

    Also, I do not know the best time to trim them...but I would guess it would be Spring & Summer so it has heat and energy to get new growth.

    Plus, in the Spring/Summer, you have the heat required to root the cuttings. Rooting cuttings in the Winter in a cool greenhouse was less than 50% successful for me. Hard to root something when it is not growing.

    Pruning can be done two ways, cutting off some of the branches at the nodes leaving the others to grow.

    Or cutting midway on a branch to get a tip and to have the branch sprout just below the cut. I would guess that doing it this way would cause you not to have flowers until the following year.

    My plant will be too big for the moving fabric ceiling cover in the greenhouse this year, so either I can try and convince the greenhouse owner to section off a spot that will not have the fabric cover, or dig out a section of the greenhouse so the floor is lower, or trim back my plant.

    I do not want to trim back now as it is getting ready to flower.

    So, yes, I had to go to a bigger pot as my plant got bigger...but 24" is the max I can handle.

    I suggest, once a plant is 2-3 feet tall, using an 18" diameter pot to start with and then switch to 24" when it get 5-6 feet tall.

    I am going to start a new thread asking for advice on to properly prune these.

    Wildcat

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hello all,

    Hopefully, within the next few days my plumeria will start to flower. I'll post some pictures when it does.

    Wildcat

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    To all,

    Here are a couple pictures of the first flowers for this year. Should be many more throughout the rest of Summer.

    Wildcat

    {{gwi:1165216}}

    {{gwi:1157765}}

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hello all,

    Here are some new pictures I shot today of my plumeria, a month after the ones above.

    Compared to my picture in my original post at the top of this thread, you can see the tremendous growth in less than 3 months. The first picture below is shot at the same angle. The rest are different angles.

    Wildcat

    {{gwi:1157766}}
    {{gwi:1165219}}
    {{gwi:1158137}}
    {{gwi:1157764}}

  • Arl_Tom
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wildcat,

    That is amazing. I'm going to try it next year.

    ~Tom

  • sjv78736
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    wow! wow! wow! i love this post! great info, you are so specific - i really appreciate that. and the photos help so much too - aside from just being grand inspiration!
    thank you wildcat -
    I am at the end of my third season w/my first cutting. ive yet to have blooms, was hoping for them this year. i was told to expect to wait 2-3 yrs, so i have been patient. but as i near the end of year 3, i find i am much impatient. i maybe asking lots of newbie q's. i hope you dont mind.
    congrats on your lovely tree! does it smell nice too?
    Jo

  • Mommasons
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wildcat....
    Looks like a Celedine or Aztec Gold.
    Beautiful tree! She looks healthy and happy........

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hello SJV,

    Thank you for your kind words. Feel free to ask any questions you like...it is much easier and less stressful to do so...than to learn by frustration of trial and error. Believe me! LOL!

    Mommasons,

    Thank you for this compliment and the ID. The flower tips are truely more white than the pictures show, dratted low quality old digital camera I have.

    Wildcat

  • Ninel_t
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wildcat, can you please take a look at the post i made yesterday - "Help: something black on leaves" - i would really appreciate any input you'd have. Thanks.

  • kasiec
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wildcat - that is such a great looking tree.

    Kasie

  • jeanne_del
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wow, that tree looks great! Congrats!

    jeanne

  • wayne_5 zone 6a Central Indiana
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    My daughter brought back 2 cuttings from Hawaii about 7 years ago. she gave me one [pink red blooms] and hers is the color of yours Wildcat. Mine is three branched at the bottom and is about 6 feet tall. My daughter asked me what I was going to do when it got too tall to bring inside. I guess I could cut it back.

  • kbauman
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hi Tony,
    My name is Karen, I live in No. Hollywood, have seen your posts. You said, if I remember right, you plant your plumies in the ground, east sun against a west wall. Question. being we have the same conditions, soil, etc. In the Ground? roots in the ground? in pots in the ground? would appreciate the help. I am new at this.
    Karen..

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hi Karen,

    This large plumera lives in a pot, currently a 24" diameter pot (? gallons). Generally, I plunge the pot as per my details above into a raised bed garden out in my yard. It does get a little morning shade due to a large Tulip Popular to its east, but in reality, it is in full sun.

    It can only go out in mid to lay May and brought in by mid October as here in Zone 5, we can get frosts around then. Being that you are in Zone 9, yours could be out much earlier & later, however no frost.

    I like to keep plumerias in pots as I think they do not like to have their roots disturb very much. I do think plunging the pot helps keep the roots cool and better watered in the heat of the Summer. Plus, I feel the larger the pot the better.

    Carefully read the posts above about drain holes in the pots.

    Also, plumerias love fertilizer.

    Wildcat

  • tdogdad
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Growing seedlings takes a long time, true, but unlike cuttings your tree may be a completely unique plant. I thought it was a Celadine but you said your seeds came from a red which could make it a one of a kind, could be a "wildcat yellow" One nice point is that it is very upright and symmetrical which is not a common trait of the Celadine. Plumeria have so many genes that they can produce seeds of great variety. I had fifty seedlings from a Cindy Moragne (large,rolled,yellow-white) and the first to flower was red and white, the second orange, the third was pink and the forth looked like mom. Seedlings are where the new varieties come from and you might have one. Nice tree.

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Tdogdad,

    Thank you for the compliment!

    Sounds like your Cindy Moragne was like a cat in heat, when the kittens come there are 6 totally different ones.

    Actually, I was wondering if they accidently sent me Celadine seeds instead of the red ones they were supposed to?

    Wildcat

  • tdogdad
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Moragne seeds are a premium because they were a cross between a bright red (Scott Pratt) and a monster pink/white (Daisy Wilcox) The seedlings (Cindy,Kimi, Mary, Bill, Edi, Jean, Jeannie, Julie, #23 and#27) are all wonderful, big, and span all the colors. If you get seeds on any, always plant them because you have a huge variation available.

    Regarding your seedling, it could be a cross between a number of plants. Celadine does have a waxy, citrusy smell that most people equate to plumnerias in general because they are the most used flower for Hawaiian Leis. It is one of the best smells in the flower world. Everyone should own several. Until they develope DNA testing for Plumies, we will never know for sure with seedlings. Your tree is an excellent looking plant anyway you look.

  • kbauman
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hi WildCat.
    thanks for the info.. Now concerned, I only have one rooted plumie, bought it at a nursery in a one gallon can. Was advised by the nursery to put it in a 3 gallon container, is plunged into the ground as advised. You say now it should have been in a larger 5 gallon container?...am afraid to take the plant out, and put it in a larger container. Afraid I will mess up the roots, my only chance maybe at seeing flowers. My other ones are new cutting, guess will not bloom this year. What should I do? in the ground, more rain coming.
    Karen

  • tdogdad
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Karen. Cuttings will usually bloom the first year especially in So,Cal. because the season stays warm into November. I would not recommend plunging new starts. Follow Mikeods's advice of placing on warm concrete or mine of putting on a few inches of rock. I would bring them in on cold evenings or when rain threatens. Also your established plant should be fine. Many professional growers recommend keeping plants in smaller pots and slowly moving up in size as too much soil somehow has a cooling effect (maybe distance from warm sides.) Root pruning is usually done in the dormant season (Jan/Feb) where the outer and bottom inch of root and soil is trimmed off and replaced with fresh soil mixed with a small amount of organic fertilizers. When the plant starts to wake up, new roots are stimulated and the plant is revitalized. You can transplant anytime, just use B-1 solution to lessen transplant shock as you would in most plants. Your biggest problem right now is that spring seems to be avoiding So. Ca. and there is unusually low temperatures and periodic rain. Starts need to stay warm, your 3 gallon should be ok as long as the soil is not standing water. As long as the sun comes out this week and dries it out (do not water it). Look at your soil- if mushy act and move it- if moist let it dry. Remember, wildcat plunges into a raised, good draining soil bed. Raised drains to level.

  • kbauman
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Hi WildCat,
    thanks for much for the information, have copy and pasted,will print it out and will keep it for my file. will use your advise..appreciate it..yes, our spring is very rainy, so unusual for us, since Feb, rain. My hibiscus are so diseased, cactus, am trying so hard to save them all, spraying
    Hope for sun!!! good luck on yours too.
    Karen.

  • Wildcat_IN_Z5
    Original Author
    18 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago
  • roxy44
    17 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Okay recently I got a plumeria that has been kept captive in a garage for a year.. it hasent seen water or sun.. I now have it in the ground and it is going nuts.. it has several full leaves and it has bloomed 3 times now.. my question is what is the best way to trim it??? I have it in a perfect spot in my yard yet I dont want it to get huge!!! someone please help :)