How To Cut Plumeria

By John

Plumeria, also called Frangipani, are aromatic, flowering shrubs that are simple to grow in frost-free, water-conserving gardens. Although their native country is not Hawaii, most people link plumeria tree with that island state. Where is their natural environment? 

When you get enamored with Frangipani, you’ll quickly realise that nurseries carry the more popular types, which are a great location to start your collection. Try your hand at rooting Plumeria cuttings and re-rooting your own plants when you are ready for something more exotic or if you have your eye on the Plumeria trees in a friend’s yard. Even for a novice, plumeria propagation is rather simple.

Pruning of Frangipani is very important for the growth and better health of the plant. Pruning plumeria can aid in reducing the size of the tree and assist in removing dead and unhealthy branches. When to prune plumerias is a common question among gardeners. To avoid disrupting the blooming cycle, it’s crucial to only prune a healthy tree to preserve size in the winter or early spring. At any time of the year, you can remove dead or damaged branches without harming the tree’s health or the flowers.

The best time to prune a plant is at the beginning of the growing season, which is in the spring and summer. Pruning encourages the plant to grow. In this manner, the new growth will give your plant a full, healthy appearance.

Key Takeaways

  • Plumeria, also called Frangipani, is a beautiful flower that is considered to be the world’s most beloved garden plant.
  • The beauty of the Plumeria plant is in its healthiest form, which can be obtained by the process of pruning.
  • Pruning is the process of removing unwanted branches from the plant, to promote its growth. Also, pruning of plumeria allows to limit the excessive growth of the plant.
  • Pruning can be done through different types of tools or instruments like cutting saws, pruning shears, loppers, etc.
  • Make sure to use sanitized and clean tools for pruning, as this reduces the risk of the spread of diseases in the plants.

When to Cut Plumeria

It is very important to know the correct time and method to cut plumeria for better growth. Below is the most common method to cut Plumeria. 

Prune the Plumeria in the Early Spring 

The best time to prune plumeria, better-called frangipani is at the beginning of the gardening season, which is in spring and summer. Pruning inspires the new plumeria plant to grow. In this manner, the new shoots will give your plant a full, healthy appearance.

If you’d prefer, you can prune your plant after it has finished blooming, but it’s ideal to do so towards the beginning of the growing season because pruning will encourage the plant to flourish.

In the northern hemisphere, frangipani normally blooms from April through November, and in the southern hemisphere, from February through April.

Remove The Decaying Part of the Plant

As soon as you notice any sick or dead branches on this small tree, cut them off. You don’t need to wait until a specific time of year to remove unattractive branches. Using the same method as for pruning, remove them off the plant as close to the base as you can.

Make The Cuts In the Plant with Sterilized Tool

You may use a blade, pruning clippers, or a tiny saw to prune plumeria. A sharp instrument is required to make a clean cut because older plumeria, in particular, can become exceedingly woody.

Wear planting gloves to keep your hands safe and to help you maintain your grip.

Pruning shears work best for the majority of plumeria plants. To prune larger plumeria branches, however, you should use a pruning saw; for younger, smaller plumeria plants, a sharp knife would be preferable.

By washing the blade with denatured alcohol or by rubbing alcohol on blade before and after each cut, you can stop hazardous bacteria from spreading into the cuts.

Slash Out the Unwanted Grown Branches 

Cut back any unkempt or luxuriant branches. Because of its great cutting tolerance, plumeria can be cut all the way back to a 12 in (30 cm) stem without suffering any damage. You are free to remove any branches or limbs that are in your path or that you feel don’t look very good.

Cutting your plant all the way to the ground is the only way to over-prune it.

Make the cut at the Bottom of the Plant 

Cut the limb approximately 1 inch (2.5 cm) from the root. Find the tiny knot at the root of a branch before you begin to cut. You shouldn’t cut this branch collar because it is a component of the tree.

Avoid topping, which is the practice of cutting a branch off in the centre and does not promote new development.

Mark the cuts at Complementary Angles to the Branch

Make your cuts with the branch at a 45° angle. You may avoid standing water, which might encourage the formation of fungus on the plumeria, by angling your cuts. Tip rot is caused by the fungus and can ultimately kill your plant.

Pruning the branches at an angle will offer them more surface area to form roots if you’re trying to propagate the primary plumeria plant in addition to safeguarding it.

Apply a fungicide to the tips if you do see water gathering there.

Signs You Need to Prune Plant

Pruning is very important for the healthy growth of plants and trees. But it is equally important to know when to prune the plants. Hence, following are some signs and symptoms that indicate the timely need of pruning of plants.

plumeria, flowers, petals

When Branches Break-down 

Broken branches are the initial indication that a tree needs to be pruned. You should clip any branches that are broken, splintering, or even bowing as soon as you notice them.

Dead or Bad Branches of Plants

When discussing pruning when it’s rainy earlier in this post, we brought up unhealthy plants and trees. Trees can contract diseases at other times as well, so if you observe any health problems, pruning is really necessary.

If you don’t prune as soon as you spot some bad habits, the disease might quickly develop and potentially kill your tree! If so, you might want to think about getting rid of the tree entirely.

Storm-Damaged Plants 

Although tree branches are usually extremely sturdy, they can suffer damage during storms that bring a lot of snow, rain, or even wind. If there have been several windstorms or heavy downpours recently, you should stroll around your property and inspect your trees.

Overgrowth of Plants

Although we are aware that you enjoy watching your plants and landscape flourish, too much growth might be detrimental. It could be time to give your trees a brief pruning if you notice that they are growing swiftly. In addition to preventing property damage, this will keep them looking good.

Weaker Branches of Plants 

We’ve already discussed the potential consequences of a pest or disease infestation on trees. Even if you fix the issue before a branch or limb dies, you might still have several weak branches to deal with.

Tools Needed for Pruning Plumeria 

In the queue of learning about the pruning of the plumeria plant, let’s now discuss the tools and instruments to be used in the process of pruning.

garden, garden tools, gerbera

Pruning Shears

Pruning shears, sometimes known as pruners, clippers, or secateurs, are arguably the most used instrument for trimming shrubs, flowers, vines, and minor tree growth. Cutting branches and twigs is possible with hand-held pruning shears.

Pruning shears come in three different basic varieties: anvil, bypass, and ratchet.

The most common of the three, a bypass operates similarly to a pair of scissors. Stems can grow well in it.

Cutting saw

Pruning saws are available in a variety of sizes and can cut through limbs up to 5 cm thick. Many only cut on the pull stroke, but some feature coarsely angled teeth that allow them to cut on both pushing and pulling strokes. For larger branches and smaller trunks, use larger bow saws.

Extended-Reach Pruner

On a long pole, long-reach pruners resemble secateurs. Lifting a rope or handle at the other end moves them. The periodic pruning of towering trees or large bushes is perfect for using them; they may cut thick branches up to roughly 3 cm thick.


Lops can cut hardwood stems up to 3 cm thick, and they have long arms for good leverage. They work best for challenging pruning. To make cutting simpler, some have ratchet systems and extendable handles.

Importance of using Clean and Sharp Tools to Prevent the Spread of Disease 

gardening, garden, shovel

It is important to clean and disinfect the tools to be used for the pruning of plants as there are certain pathogens. Plant diseases that can harm plants that are brought on by these pathogens include bacteria, fungus, and viruses. Through soil and plant detritus, such as roots trapped on a spade, tree sap on a pruner blade, or potting soil left on a pot, they can spread to and infect plants.

Therefore, in some cases, cleaning the tools is very important. This is because these pathogens are minute, so even if your instruments appear spotless, they could still have harmful microbes on the blades or tomato cage.

By carefully cleaning and sanitising your tools, equipment, and gardening implements, you can stop the disease from spreading between plants.

After Care of Plumeria

The exotic tropical plant known as plumeria is simple to grow. As a little tree cultivated in a pot on the porch or in the garden, it is simple to maintain. For plumeria to bloom, it needs at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily. Depending on where you reside and the duration of your growing season, germinating seeds bloom from May to November.

planting, environment, nature

The Availability of Sun

The more sun, the better for plumerias. For best blossoming, six to eight hours of direct, hot sunlight are required. Without enough light exposure, rooted cuttings cannot generate bloom stems. The best is full sun to propagate plumeria.

Availability of Water 

Although plumeria cuttings require water after you put them in potting soil, they can survive extended periods of dryness. Small pots could require daily watering, however large pots or those planted in the ground might not. They become accustomed to the circumstances they are in. When in doubt, a dryer is preferable to a wetter. Never place a saucer beneath any of your plants.

Use of Fertilisers

There are now time-released fertilisers that, depending on your growth season, can be sprayed once or twice a year and release fertiliser over a period of 6 to 9 months. Excalibur 11-11-13 or a comparable fertiliser with a balanced ratio of micronutrients can be used to feed your plumerias. Consistent fertilisation with an even number fertiliser will result in healthy plants with impressive flower clusters. From spring through September, foliar feeding can be applied every two or three weeks to aid with flower output. About 45 days before the start of your dormant period, stop fertilising your plants. To ensure compact growth, stay away from nitrogen-rich fertilisers.

Diseases and Insects

There are very few issues with plumerias. Plants that have been overwatered or overshaded will be attacked by Spider Mites, White Bugs, Mealy Bugs, and Scale. Spray with pesticides recommended for these insects or liquid washing detergents at 1-2 tablespoons/gallon. Because the plant fertilizers begin to lose their leaves around the same time, the “rust” fungus that occasionally appears on the foliage of plumerias in the fall is rarely especially destructive. Rust is often the result of insufficient airflow and high humidity on the leaves.


For bigger flowers, greener leaves, and increased disease resistance, it’s critical to remember to prune your plumeria plants annually as part of your usual care.

As long as there is sufficient consistent growth for your plumeria to regenerate, there is no need to overthink pruning because you can never really get it wrong on any plant. We hope this plumeria trimming instruction has clarified any confusion you may have had. Another important thing to remember in the case of plumeria cutting is proper pruning and the usage of clean and derived instruments to avoid the spread of any kind of disease or infections in the plants.

Frequently Asked Questions 

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