QUICK REFERENCE PLANTING GUIDE
1. Light/Sun Exposure - Full sun.
2. USDA Hardiness Zones - 9 and warmer.
3. Planting Distance - 12 feet apart in ground.
4. Mature Height/Spread - 25 feet with a similar spread at maturity. (Can tolerate pruning to keep at a smaller size.)
5. Bloom Time - Spring/summer.
6. Planting Instructions - Each of the Plumeria canes you have received are cuttings that have been taken from a mature plant. By following just a few easy steps, you'll be on your way to growing one of the most beautiful tropical plants on the market.
The first step is to determine which part of the cane it the top and which is the bottom. The pointed end is the top and the flat (cut) end is the bottom. If both ends are flat (cut) then you can plant it with either end up. Place the cane vertically in the pot with the bottom of the cane about three inches below the surface of the soil. As there are no roots yet, we recommend that you stake the plant for added support. The stake should be long enough to rest against the bottom of the pot and still extend above the top of the plumeria cane. Loosely fasten the cane to the stake with plant ties or strips of fabric. The stake can be removed after sufficient root growth has developed (about 4 months). It is important that the cane is planted in a soil that drains very well. A soil that contains about 1/3 sand or perlite in a pot with 3-4 drainage holes should drain sufficiently, but you should check the soil regularly to make sure it isn't holding too much water. In the warmer months of the year your plumeria will require watering 1-2 times a week depending upon rainfall.
GET THE MOST ENJOYMENT
Plumeria (West Indian Jasmine) produces white flowers with yellow centers that are about 2 1/2 inches in diameter. Providing this plant with 6 to 8 hours of direct or nearly direct sunlight will give it the light it needs to bloom strongly - a reward for any gardener!
Although these plants will perform well in average garden soils of all types, we recommend having your soil tested periodically by the local County Extension Office. These tests can determine if the soil needs any amendments to enhance your plants' growth and performance. See below for our recommended practice to improve your soil without any additional testing:
1. Spade or till the soil to a depth of 12 to 18 inches.
2. To provide nutrients and improve drainage, add organic matter to your soil by mixing in a 2 to 4-inch layer of dehydrated manure, garden compost, shredded leaves, and/or peat moss.
3. After active growth begins, periodically feed with Cottage Farms' water soluble Carefree Bud-N-Flower Booster. Plants in containers need more frequent watering and feeding, especially when in active growth and bloom.
Watering - Water is very important to actively growing plumeria. Without enough water, plumeria tend to go into a state of suspended animation or dormancy. They may even abort flower stalks in an effort to reduce water loss. However, on the opposite end, plumeria do not want too much water, especially standing water on their roots. Wet feet for more than a very few days may cause root rot, which may lead to eventual total plant loss. Unfortunately, the obvious symptom of too much or not enough water, droopy leaves, is the same for either condition. Before watering a plumeria it is wise to check the top few inches of soil for moisture. If dry, then go ahead and water. The proper soil is critical for optimum plumeria growth and flowering. A good soil is one that allows water to fully penetrate, retains plenty of moisture for a number of days, and while at the same time drains excess water quickly. There are many good prepackaged soils available meeting these specifications.
Mulching - Apply a 2 to 4 inch layer of shredded bark, compost or other organic mulch around your plants to promote moisture retention, maintain even soil temperatures, and to discourage weed growth.
Weeding - Keep the area around your plants free of weeds. Weeds compete with all plants for food, water and light. Walk around the garden periodically and pull weeds, including the roots, as soon as you see them. Mulch also assists in keeping weeds down.
Grooming - Clip off unsightly or dead growth to maintain the plants in good form and shape. Remove spent blossoms to promote additional blooming. Pinch or cut-off blooms when they have faded but leave as much foliage as possible.
Feeding - Feed your plants once every 2-3 weeks during the growing season with a water-soluble fertilizer such as Cottage Farms' Carefree Bud-N-Flower Booster. Discontinue feeding after September 1st so your plants can harden off for winter dormancy. Resume fertilizing when new growth appears in the spring.
Winterizing - Containerized plants may be moved into an unheated area such as a garage or basement. In the winter the plants are kept at 50 degrees F (10degrees C) and will lose their leaves. During this time water very sparingly so the roots don't rot from staying wet.
As soon as the weather warms up in the spring remove any mulch from in-ground plantings. At the same time be sure to clean up the garden and to remove any dead or damaged parts on any plants. This is also the right time to bring any containerized plant back out into the garden sunlight where it will immediately begin to repeat its yearly garden performance.
CAUTION: Not all plant material is edible. Though most plants are harmless, some contain toxic substances which can cause headaches, nausea, dizziness, or other discomforts. As a general rule, only known food products should be eaten. In case of ingestion, please contact your local poison control center at once and advise them of the plant ingested. Keep out of reach of children.