The Q&A Archives: Overgrown Bird of Paradise

Question: My husband and I recently moved to a new home that has beautiful, but overgrown Bird of Paradise plants in the front yard. They are over 5 feet tall and very healthy and full of flowers. They are getting too tall and they need to be cut back, what is best method of pruning these back?

Answer: Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia reginae) produce long-lasting and quite striking flowers intermittently throughout the year, but bloom best during the cool season. You can cut the spent flower and stalk down to foliage level to keep the plants looking neat and tidy. Cut off dead leaves as they appear. Bird of Paradise blooms best when clumps are crowded, and the soil is watered deeply and frequently.

If your plants are really overgrown, you may want to dig them up, divide them (making sure each division has both roots and tops attached), and then replant. Then, if you provide minimal care by cutting away spent foliage and flowers, you should be able to keep your plants a more manageable size. Enjoy!

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