|I have an outdoor bird of paradise that has shoots growing around it and directly from the trunk. I know that in some plants, these suckers can drain the main plant of its energy. Should I be pruning these growths off or leaving them?|
You can leave them to form a clump of blooming plants. Sometimes people remove them and repot them to start new plants. The best time to divide a group of plants is in late spring or early summer.
Dig up the clump of plants, and separate them into single-stem divisions. Remove dead leaves and roots and wash the roots. Soak these individual divisions in a 1:10 dilution of bleach for ten minutes before planting them in order to eliminate any disease and insects that might be present.
Next plant them at the same soil depth at which they had been previously growing. Keep the soil moist until roots are established, then begin fertilizing. Divisions usually require at least three months to generate a good new root system.
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