Apartment plants

Dracena grown up


Question: what to do with a too large dracena?


Hello, I have a dracena for almost 6 years about 2 meters high. In the last 2 years it is undressing but new leaves are still growing at the top. Do you think it is necessary to cut it? Since it is now outside in a vase, perhaps a little small, can I proceed with the insertion in a new vase before taking it inside? Thanks

Dracena grown up: Answer: prune the dragon tree


Dear Barbara,
the dragon trees are plants of exotic origin, which in nature live in areas where they can develop like small trees; just like the most common and widespread trees in our countryside, the dragon trees also tend not to produce sprouts along the trunk. The particular development of these plants, which tend not to branch, or to branch sparingly; and that produce at the apex of each stem a single tuft of leaves, it makes their growth well determined: with the passing of the years the erect stem lengthens and strengthens, and at the apex only a single tuft of leaves remains. For this reason, if we do not want to obtain a sort of very high upside down broom, it will be necessary periodically, to cut the stem, to lower it. The dragon trees that sell in the nursery are nothing more than rooted stem cuttings, with a bud at the apex; often in a single vase two or three cuttings are placed, of different length, so as to obtain what looks like a single shrub, with tufts at different heights. When a dracena is pruned, consider that the lower part will tend to germinate, and to produce a new stock; but also the upper part, the one with the leaves, can be kept: it is enough to insert it in the ground, like cutting, and it will root with great ease. If you wish to put them in the same vase or in two different colors, it depends on you. So, first of all, buy a new vase, bigger than the one you have (consider however that the dragon trees should be repotted every 2-3 years, offering them a larger container and fresh soil); cut the stem to the height that suits you best, and cover the bare stem, on the cutting area, with pruning putty, so that the loss of sap stops. The cut part should be immersed in the rooting hormone, and then in the soil, for at least a few centimeters, so that it can stand upright without problems. Water as usual, when the soil is dry.