Propagation: Can I shorten 18 foot tall Dracaena by 7 feet?

Discussion in 'Indoor and Greenhouse Plants' started by Melissab15, Apr 19, 2020.

  1. Melissab15

    Melissab15 New Member

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    Kelowna canada
    Hi everyone. I am new to this forum. I'm just wondering if anyone would be able to assist me with a question. I am thinking about cutting this stemmy dracanea down. Does anyone have any experience with this? Will the plant continue to grow if I cut the stem by about 5-7 feet? The plant is approximately 18 feet tall and I am moving to a new home with drastically lower ceilings but I would love to keep my plants. I also have 2 others that are between 17-19 feet that aren't quite as "stemmy" but I would still need to cut them down.

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  2. wcutler

    wcutler Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Vancouver, BC Canada
    Welcome, Melissab15.
    These plants usually put up with whatever you do to control their size. I would suggest getting some new pots, cut off the tops to plant in the new pots. These tops should be as close to 3 feet tall as you're prepared to go - I think shortening the 18 foot plant to 12 feet might be too much of a plant to manage with no roots, but 5 or 6 feet might be ok. Remove the bottom leaves if they would be in the soil. If these make it, they might be the best-looking. Then cut the original plants down to around 5 feet or less. The problem here is that they may put out new shoots at the top of the bare trunk, which could look ok, or might not. You will see what you think of what you get, and which plants you want to keep. Those stems with no leaves might need less water for a while until they get some leaves. You could also do this gradually - start one new plant with the tallest stem and keep the others as they are for a while to see how things develop. If you do one stem at a time, you might be more likely to end up with the growth on the original plant staggered the way it is now. That plant on the left is so attractive as it is.
  3. Junglekeeper

    Junglekeeper Esteemed Contributor 10 Years

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    Vancouver BC Canada
    You could air layer the stems if you have enough time for new roots to develop before the move. This way you have more control over the size of the propagated plants as they will be supported by their own root system.

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