Saturday, 7 May 2016

Growing Frangipani From Cuttings

Pink Plumeria flowers

Propagating Frangipani cuttings is the best way to take the guess work out of choosing a Frangipani. Cuttings will be an exact duplicate of the parent plant and cuttings can be taken at any time of the year, though they are easiest to manage in winter when the tree is bare.

There are basically two methods for taking frangipani cuttings - hardwood (during the cooler months) or semi ripe wood (during spring or summer when the plant is in bloom). Cuttings should be at least 30cm in length and no more than around 60cm long.

For hardwood cuttings taken during dormancy in winter - if the white latex is still flowing allow the cutting to dry in a cool dark place for a few days before planting in free draining compost or sand.

For semi ripe cuttings of stem tips in the early spring before leaves form - allow the wound to dry before inserting it in free draining compost or sand. 

If propagating in summer, choose a section which does not have any flowers attached. Remove any leaves other than just a few at the very tip. Ensure you make a nice clean cut, reducing the trauma on the plant and enabling faster healing. Leave the cutting aside for at least five weeks, ideally in an upright position in a dry location. Again, you must allow the wound to dry before planting. There is a lady at Moonee Beach who has quite a few different varieties of Frangipani and she throws the cuttings under the tree - that way she knows exactly what colour and/or variety the cutting is.

As with all cuttings, water in well and then once every few weeks if the soil is dry, otherwise leave them alone until new leaves appear. If you over-water at this stage the cuttings may rot. 

You may need to support your frangipani with a stake or ropes for a few weeks until the roots anchor it firmly in position. 

When new leaves appear, you can replant directly into the garden (this is where our roos come into play they keep knocking them over all the time!). Frangipani also grow really well in pots - use a good quality potting mix.

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