Spindly Potato Tree - Knowledgebase Question

Avatar for debpine
Question by debpine
August 7, 1999
I just bought a potato tree that is quite spindly and needs pruning. How far back should I prune it, and how do I get it fuller, with lots of flowers?

Answer from NGA
August 7, 1999
Solanum Rantonnetii 'Grandiflorum', the Blue Potato Bush, is probably what you're growing. It's sometimes classified as Lycianthes rantonnei, or Paraguay Nightshade. It's generally grown as a shrub but can be staked into a tree form. It's evergreen in mild winters, deciduous in colder areas. The bright green oval leaves are about 4" long and the plant is covered with violet blue, yellow-centered, one inch wide flowers throughout the warm months.

You can prune the branches back by about one-third this winter, or very early next spring to encourage new flowering wood.

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