|I live in Zone 7 and recently planted a Dipladenia in a sunny corner of my back yard (it's about 15 inches tall). About a month and a half ago my dog jumped on the plant and nearly broke off one of the limbs. Much to my surprise, the plant still flourishes and show no signs of damage. (Now there's a small fence around it.) I have been reading recently that Dipladenias don't like terribly cold weather, although the garden guy at Lowe's (where I bought the plant) said it would be OK to plant it outdoors. We rarely get below freezing here in Chattanooga, but we occasionally have freezing spells that may last a couple of days. My question is, should I unplant the Dipladenia and put it in a pot indoors for the winter? (I heard they can bloom year-round.) Would unplanting the Dipladenia hurt it (especially since it had a wounded branch), and if not, how do I unplant it to make sure it stays safe? Or should I just put a plastic tent around it for the winter? Thanks for your help. I've been trying everywhere for an answer to this important question.
|Your Dipladenia splendens is tender and should be grown indoors or in a greenhouse during the winter months. You can take a chance leaving it outside, but the plant will suffer when temperatures are below 55F degrees. I'd suggest potting your plant up and taking it indoors over the winter. You can take it outside in the spring, and even sink the pot into the ground to make it look like it's growing in your yard. The plant goes into a natural resting period in the wintertime, so potting it up at this time shouldn't set it back. You can even cut back the foliage if you want, to encourage new stems. Once indoors, give your plant bright light, but not direct sunlight, water sparingly (it won't grow much in the winter and doesn't like soggy feet), and mist the leaves when they begin to show flower buds. Under the right conditions, your Dipladenia will bloom almost year 'round, except for a short resting period during the winter months.|