The Q&A Archives: Plumeria Cuttings

Question: My neighbor gave me a big cutting of plumeria that had 3 "branches" on it. I was told to cut these and plant in good soil, and not to overwater. The container has drainage, but the soil has remained very moist since the planting. I am concerned now because the leaves are shriveling and I have seen no new growth. Is there anything I can do to save them? They still look healthy for the most part, just the leaves don't seem to be doing well. They have been in these new pots for about 2 or 3 weeks now. Thank you for any help.

Answer: To help rootings get established it's helpful to dip the cut ends into a powdered rooting hormone and to make sure at least one node (leaf scar) is buried in the soil. (This is where the new roots will develop.)

It's also generally recommended that you remove most of the leaves, just allowing the topmost two leaves on the cutting.

At this point remove all except the top two leaves and don't water again until the top of the soil begins to dry out. Keep the cuttings outdoors in a spot protected from sun and wind. Rooting can take a few weeks to a few months. You'll know rooting has taken place when you see new leaves emerging from the cuttings. If the cuttings shrivel up, the rooting was not successful and you'll have to try again with fresh potting soil and fresh cuttings.

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