Hummingbird House The Garden Helper
No-dash-here, you've found The Real Garden Helper! Gardening on the Web since 1997
vine bar
Wild Willy
 

dracaena marginata needs help!

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2004
« Prev thread: Dracaena Marginata| Next thread: Dracaena NOT Scheflerra-so sorry! »
Back to Thread index
by Connie_d on April 22, 2004 04:57 PM
I have had a dracaena for a few years now, and its health ha s steadily gotten worse. there were originally 3 stems (trunks??) in the pot, but 2 have since died.
The remaining one is aout 6 feet tall. the leaves are drooping terribly, and it just looks very unhappy.
I have been told that i can chop off the top of the stem, stick it in some dirt and it will grow. Also that as long as the roots are not rotted, they will produce a new growth too. Is this true?
Does anyone have any simple tips? I am new to gardening etc., and kind of dumb about it yet.
by obywan59 on April 22, 2004 06:04 PM
Dracaenas like to be evenly moist most of the year except in winter when you can allow them to dry somewhat between waterings. They like it if you cn provide extra humidity.

Being such a big plant, I wonder if the center of the rootball might have completely dried out. If it has, even though you water thoroughly from the top till water runs out the bottom, the center will still be dry. I'd take it out of the pot to check.

If you decide that might be the problem, the remedy is to allow it to set in water for a while. The rootball will then gradually soak up the water. Keep adding water, until no more can be soaked up, (watch the level of water in the dish) then dump the rest of the water out of the pot and resume watering as needed.

* * * *
 -
Terry

May the force be with you
by Connie_d on April 22, 2004 11:33 PM
quote:
Originally posted by obywan59:
Dracaenas like to be evenly moist most of the year except in winter when you can allow them to dry somewhat between waterings. They like it if you cn provide extra humidity.

Being such a big plant, I wonder if the center of the rootball might have completely dried out. If it has, even though you water thoroughly from the top till water runs out the bottom, the center will still be dry. I'd take it out of the pot to check.

If you decide that might be the problem, the remedy is to allow it to set in water for a while. The rootball will then gradually soak up the water. Keep adding water, until no more can be soaked up, (watch the level of water in the dish) then dump the rest of the water out of the pot and resume watering as needed.

by Jiffymouse on April 22, 2004 11:34 PM
i agree with terry, but to answer your other question, yes, you can cut the top off and root it and the bottom will grow side shoots so that you have a multi-stemmed plant.
by Connie_d on April 22, 2004 11:34 PM
Thanks for the advice Terry.
I am still wondering about cutting it in half to make 2 plants. Is there a preferred way to do this?
by Will Creed on April 23, 2004 04:24 AM
Hi Connie,

There is a reason why your Dracaena marginata has been steadily declining and cutting it back will not solve the problem.

The most common problem with older Marginatas is that they need less water and they are often overwatered inadvertently. There are no symptoms of the root rot that results until it is often too late. That may be happening with yours, although I hope not.

Allow the top half of the soil to dry out before watering thoroughly. Provide as much bright light as possible.

If you prune the top off, it will not root unless it is kept in very high humidity. The best way to do that is to plant the top cutting in a small pot of soilless peat-based potting mix. Then place the entire pot and plant inside a clear plastic bag, blow it up, and seal it closed. The sealed bag will maintain both the soil moisture, but also the humidity. Keep it in a location where there is bright, but indirect sunlight. After 4 - 6 weeks you can begin to gradually open and remove the bag over the course of a week.

Active Garden Forum

« Prev thread: Dracaena Marginata| Next thread: Dracaena NOT Scheflerra-so sorry! »
Back to Thread index

Other articles you might like: