The frangipani (Plumeria sp.) tree is native to tropical areas and is prized for beautiful, fragrant flowers that are often used in perfume-making. Ideal tree for shade, fragrance and beauty, frangipani is easy to grow from cuttings.
Also known as the Caterpillar tree, Pagoda tree, Nosegay tree and Milk tree, all you need is a cutting to get your own frangipani tree started.
Take a Cutting
One of the easiest plants to start from a cutting, all you need is a piece of branch to start your own frangipani tree.
The trick is to allow the cut end to dry out and form a callous before planting. This process will take up to four weeks.
Early summer is the best time to take a cutting from the tree, but any time of year will work. Cut off a branch from anywhere on the tree. Any size or length will work fine. Snip off most of the leaves near the cut end, and remove any flower buds.
Stand the cutting upright, cut end facing upward, in a shady location that will provide cutting with protection from rain and from being toppled over. A hard callous will form over the cut end in 1-4 weeks.
After the callous has covered the cut, insert the original cut end into a pot filled with coarse sand. Water sparingly at transplant time, and continue to water sparingly until roots form. Keep pot in a sunny location.
Even though the frangipani is easy to grow from cuttings, it is a tropical native plant and grows best in warmer climates.
Recommended for USDA growing zones 10-12, but it will grow in climates with mild winters if tree is protected from below freezing temperatures.
The small size of the tree makes it ideal for growing inside a greenhouse.
After roots form on cutting, plant frangipani in a full sun location.The tree is drought tolerant, but will grow best in moist, well-draining soil.
Mix sand and compost into soil before planting to mimic the natural texture and structure of soil found in tropical regions.
Frangipani will reach a mature height of 25 feet (7.5 m) and 15 feet (4.5 m ) in width. The tree tolerates pruning very well and can be kept at a much smaller size if desired.
The tree will produce an abundance of fragrant white flowers in spring. It has large green leaves which will drop in fall. In its natural habitat, the frangipani tree produces fruit pods but this rarely occurs outside of a tropical environment.
Feed the tree twice a year, once in spring and again in fall (autumn) with a balanced plant food.
|Soil type||loam, sand|
|Soil drainage||well drained, don’t over water during winter|
|Height x Width||15~25 x 15~25 feet (4.5~7.5 x 4.5~7.5 m)|
|Flowering seasons||Spring, Summer, Autumn/Fall|
|Plant hardiness zones||10 –12|