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Controlling Marginata Dracaena growth

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by Amany on February 06, 2006 06:57 AM
Hello

I have two marinata dracaenas that are both four feet tall. I don't want them to get much larger. What's the best way to control their growth?
by murphyette on February 06, 2006 07:11 AM
Short of not moving them to a bigger pot, I am not sure there IS a way to stop them. I guess you could keep clipping the new growth from the top. Hopefully somebody will chime in with a sure fire way.

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Jody
by Amany on February 07, 2006 06:58 PM
Someone on another forum just suggested keeping it in a slightly lower lighted area and pruning the roots. How do I prune the roots without damaging the plants?
by murphyette on February 08, 2006 03:45 AM
quote:
Originally posted by Amany:
Someone on another forum just suggested keeping it in a slightly lower lighted area and pruning the roots. How do I prune the roots without damaging the plants?
Yikes, I don't know. Seems like that would be awfully traumatic for the plant.

* * * *
Jody
by Erich on February 08, 2006 06:35 AM
You could try air layering to reduce the plant in height a foot or so, so that it can grow back again.

However, I would also suggest to transplant them into bigger pots and let them grow bigger and taller until they can't possibly fit in your place. Then let them grow some more.
by Will Creed on February 09, 2006 09:00 AM
Hi Amany,

Some plants, like the Dracaena marginata, grow ever taller and do not normally put out side shoots or branches. Eventually they do get too tall and may even start flopping over under their own weight.

Changing the pot size will have no effect on the growth rate or size, but it may lead to root rot. Root pruning is used to maintain the pot size of a plant whose roots have outgrown the pot. But that is also not likely to control top growth or height and is not a solution to your problem.

Pruning or cutting back the too-tall stems is the only solution. The stems can be cut back to any height. Just remember that the new growth will come in just below the point where you make the cut. Thus, it is best to cut lower than you might initially think. If there is more than one stem, you may want to cut back one at a time so that you still have some foliage at all times.

Air layering is a more complicated method of pruning and its purpose is to be able to develop roots on the cut-off portion and propagate another plant from it. If that is important to you, contact me by email or PM and I will send you instructions on how to air layer.
by Amany on February 09, 2006 10:45 PM
You were extremely helpful. Thanks so much!

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