Saturday, July 18, 2009

Plumeria on the plane!

I went to visit my family for the Fourth of July, and this is what I managed to bring back. My uncle was more than happy to cut me a piece of his Plumeria plant for me to take home. You may have seen these flowers on leis in Hawaii or other tropical destinations. They are fragrant and beautiful, but really expensive to buy as a potted plant. I have researched plumeria guides online, and found that it is "very easy" to grow a plumeria from a cutting. We'll see how easy it is! Ha! Now, I'm surprised that I was able to take this with me on the plane seeing as how big it is! The TSA worker just asked me what it was, and said she'd never seen one x-rayed before, and let me on my way.

Now to planting. I think you are supposed to pick off the leaves and flowers before you transport the cutting. You are also supposed to let the bottom of the cutting dry out before planting it. I didn't do either of those things! My uncle told me just to put it in soil when I got home, so that is what I did. I thought I'd do it his way since he's done it before. Though, I did follow directions from plumeria 101 too.

Take 1/3 peat or potting soil and 2/3s perlite and fill the pot. Dip the cutting in rooting hormone. Stick the cutting in the soil and press the soil firmly around it. Add small rocks or pea gravel. Make sure the cutting is sturdy by pressing down on the gravel. Last, water it until water comes out of the bottom. Don't water again until the soil is dry. Leave in a sunny place.

This is my final result of planting my cutting. Days after this some of the leaves turned yellow and flimsy so I picked those off. The flowers started to open (smells so good!) but not to its best because it has no roots. I will pluck those off soon enough so the cutting can concentrate on its root growing. I stuck this outside in the hot weather.. hoping my modified version works!