How To Shape Dracaena Marginata

Dracaena Marginata plants are one of the unique species to own. Not only because of their special appearance but because they don’t require much attention, unlike most plants. However, the dracaena marginata, also known as the Madagascar dragon tree species, benefit significantly from good pruning, trimming, and shaping. To most newer plant owners, those three terms may sound nearly the same – that’s not the case, but we’ll get further into that in just a bit. But first, it’s essential to know that the process of shaping does apply to each dracaena variation, as there are many. For reference, just a few of these species are the dracaena marginata tricolor, bicolor, magenta, and colorama. Before we can understand how to shape a dracaena marginata properly, it often helps to get a better idea of the plant.

What Is A Dracaena Marginata?

Dracaena Marginatas is a modern yet unique-looking tree species from the Asparagaceae plant family. They’re most commonly located in Africa, Asia, and Australia. However, you can purchase them nearly anywhere online or in some garden stores. When taken care of properly, this species can outlive a majority of other plants by years. It can grow up to 10 inches tall, with leaves reaching about 3 feet long at times. Not to mention the dracaena marginata flourishes off of some neglect – making it the perfect starter plant for beginner gardeners! Now, that doesn’t mean this plant can survive entirely on the lack of necessary care – it does still needs a healthy watering routine, trimmings, pruning, and even shaping. Now, you may be wondering how you can shape a plant that can potentially care for itself, right?

Shaping Vs. Pruning A Plant

A common misconception with newer plant owners is the difference between shaping and pruning a plant, as the two are relatively similar tasks. Shaping a plant is the act of removing any overgrown and tangled branches, stems, and leaves. Professionals mainly perform this service as they better understand how future growth may turn out. However, you can do it yourself as long as you do it correctly. Shaping your trees and shrubs is a great way to take over the designing and appearance aspects of your plants, depending on how you’d like them to appear.

Similarly, pruning is a necessary trimming process to ensure that the plants remain healthy. Pruning is also to do done when overgrown stems occur. However, it is also done if and when the plant’s leaves appear discolored if the plant endures a pest infestation, etc. Pruning is an essential part of caring for your plants to make sure they remain healthy. Shaping your plant is more or less just for your enjoyment and for trimming away those elongated stems.

How To Shape A Dracaena Marginata?

When shaping any plant, it’s crucial to ensure that you correctly consider the plant growth patterns. Especially with a dracaena marginata, hence why it is highly recommended that you have a garden specialist take care of it for you. Although being a tree that can withstand a bit of neglect, dracaena marginatas are a delicate species. They are easy to harm if the action isn’t done correctly. Nonetheless, everyone may not have the time or money to have a specialist shape their dracaena for them – not to worry. The following guide will help you thoroughly understand how to shape your dracaena marginata without harming it:

  • The very thing you’ll need to do is decide how you’d like your dracaena to look. You can research this part or, better yet, speak to a specialist to depict what kind of shaping will benefit your dracaena marginata.
  • Before shaping your dracaena, you’ll need to be sure to wash your gardening shears thoroughly depending on how height you’d like your dracaena to be at and how you’d like it to look. Then it would help if you decided where you would like to make the trim on your plant stem.
  • Trim off any stems that appear tangled and overgrown stems and leaves. If you’re trimming the branches, be sure to make the trim at an angle so that way they can continue growing. As for the excess trimmings, you can use those to propagate a newer dracaena marginata plant.
  • Once you’ve got an idea of trimming the dracaena, repeat those steps around the remainder of the plant. Make sure to pay attention to how much of the plant you are trimming off while shaping. Trimming too much could potentially stunt the plant.
  • Finishing up on shaping your dracaena marginata, get ready to establish further care instructions for a healthy growth process. If you’re unsure what is best for a growing Dracaena marginata, refer to the following section for tips!

Tips for Caring for Your Dracaena Marginata After Shaping

Healthy water routine

Dracaena Marginatas are highly prone to overwatering and under watering, leading to lousy root rot. Therefore, a healthy watering routine is an essential routine. When watering, you should keep pouring until the water starts leaking out of the pots draining holes. Keep in mind that your dracaena marginata can go weeks without being watered. However, you should check the soil every few days to ensure it’s still moist.

Using the correct container and soil

Regardless of where you’re planting your dracaena marginata (unless buried in the ground), it should be placed in a gardening pot with draining holes in the bottom. This step is essential as it will help avoid potential water-based issues. In addition to that, you should only use well-draining gardening soil so that your dracaenas roots will not absorb too much water.

Natural sunlight

As with any plant, natural sunlight is a must. It helps towards a healthy growing plant! However, dracaena marginata leaves are so delicate that too much sunlight exposure can burn them. With that being said, your dracaena marginata should be placed in an area where it will still receive indirect sunlight that is still relatively bright.

Safe temperatures for your dracaena marginata

Similar to how direct sunlight can harm your dracaena marginata, temperatures that are too high or too low can potentially do the same. This species can withstand a minimal time in higher or lower temperatures. However, the recommended temperature scale for this tree is between 65 degrees and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

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Posted in Guides & Care Tips