Fertilizer and Nutrients Overview

I’ve always been interested in developing a better fertilizer to use on plumeria and I love research and experimenting. After I started growing Plumeria it was only natural from me to start experimenting with different fertilizers, soil mixes, and nutrients. After years of experimenting and not coming up with what I wanted, I began to look into custom mixes, but soon realized they required investing even more time and money.

After joining Florida Colors Nursery in 2012, what seemed to be a daunting to impossible task became a necessity. The task of developing a custom fertilizer mix was necessary to provide the best possible care for our 14,000 plus plumeria plants. Our goal was to develop a fertilizer designed specifically for plumeria for our own use and to reduce the workload of applying it.

We spent over a year researching and meeting with fertilizer companies. Frustrated and beginning to wonder if we were just dreaming, we finally found a company with quality ingredients, the experience and willingness to produce a quality custom blend to our specifications. The blend turned out to be controlled release fertilizer activated by moisture and controlled by heat. Excalibur is designed to last 6 or 9 months, releasing specific nutrients as our plumeria growth habits dictated. After field testing, we decided to share it with our customers and Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer was born. Needless to say, it has exceeded our expectations.

The following information is a summary of conclusions to help you provide what your plumeria needs to grow healthy and bloom the way they should.

Plumeria Fertilization & Nutrition

Fertilization is one of the most important aspects of plumeria care. All plumeria require nutrients to survive and grow. The quantity of nutrients available to the Plumeria is affected by soil quality and water quality.

Plumeria requires micro and macronutrients for good health. Whether you’re planting a delicate young seedling or tending a mature plumeria, the health of the roots is of utmost concern for its future growth. Plumeria trees are often surviving in soils that do not contain enough available nutrients for satisfactory growth and development. Fertilizers and soil amendments help to alleviate some of the stress caused by the environment and severe weather conditions.

There are two sorts of mineral nutrients: Macronutrients, are required in large quantities and Micronutrients, are required in small quantities. The big three macronutrients, nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K), together comprise over 75% of the mineral nutrients found in Plumeria. Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg) and Sulphur (S) are also macronutrients required in smaller quantities. Micronutrients are required in very small quantities are Iron (Fe), Manganese (Mn), Zinc (Zn), Copper (Cu), Boron (B) and Chlorine (Ci). All nutrients are abbreviated by one or two letters, their chemical symbols that are based on their Latin names. The symbols are the same in all languages.

Plumeria gets nutrients from the air, the soil and the water. Plumeria use photosynthesis to convert light energy into chemical energy stored in carbohydrate molecules, such as sugars, which are synthesized from carbon dioxide and water.

It is important for a plumeria to receive at least six hours of direct sunlight every day for them to be healthy and properly produce blooms. Three to four hours is not enough. Bright, indirect sunlight also counts but contributes significantly less energy to the plant than direct sunlight. Sugars and carbohydrates are combined with nutrients to produce protein, enzymes, vitamins and other elements essential to plumeria growth.

Nutrients are taken up by the fine root hairs, not by the big roots. Even the very largest of trees have many small, fine root hairs to absorb the nutrients and water they need. The larger roots are used for supporting the tree and for storage of water and other Plumeria food. The root hairs can also excrete liquids that affect the acidity of the soil (pH). When the pH changes, the number of nutrients available may also change.

Why is the pH important?

Substrate pH is a measure of the acidity and alkalinity in soils. pH levels range from 0 to 14, with 7 being neutral, below 7 acidic and above 7 alkalines. The optimal pH range for most plumeria is between 6.5 and 7.0; however, many plumerias have adapted to thrive at pH values outside this range. Because pH levels control many chemical processes that take place in the substrate, specifically, plant nutrient availability, it’s vital to maintain proper levels for your plumeria to reach their full bloom potential.

What is considered a balanced diet of fertilizer and nutrients?

All 3 non-mineral nutrients hydrogen (H), oxygen (O) and carbon (C) and all 13 mineral nutrients are needed for healthy plumeria growth in the correct amounts, and the three mineral nutrients needed in the largest amounts are nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K). These are the three numbers on fertilizer containers and are often abbreviated NPK.

This is confusing because different people use the word “balance” differently when discussing nutrient management. I have seen articles that suggested using a “balanced” fertilizer that has equal amounts of the three macronutrients: nitrogen (N), phosphate (P), and potash (K).

To me, a “balanced diet” for plumeria means a fertilizer or combination of fertilizers and soil amendments that provide nitrogen, phosphate, potash, and micronutrients in the ratios that the plumeria needs when they need them.

Nitrogen is important for leafy growth and energy production, phosphorus is key for the storage and transfer of energy, and potassium is essential for many aspects of metabolism. Nitrogen is water soluble and that which is not used by plants may be leached from the soil. Phosphorus is tightly bound by soil particles and remains in place unless used by the plant or is washed into gutters and streams. Potassium is bound to soil less tightly than phosphorus and potassium excesses are not usually harmful.

Plumeria needs all 13 mineral nutrients to remain healthy. If one is missing, your plumeria will not grow well. It is easy to confuse the symptoms of nutrient deficiencies with those of too much or not enough shade or water. In fact, all three factors, shade, water and nutrients affect your plumeria growth and interact to produce a healthy plumeria. Plumeria that grows in full light with abundant moisture and receives all the 13 mineral nutrients will grow normally, have healthy green leaves and bloom normally. Together, water, sun, and nutrients must be monitored and adjusted with the weather to produce a healthy plan.

Do my plumeria need a lot of phosphorus to produce more blossoms? 

In a word, no. The effect of phosphorus on a plant’s metabolism and the amount needed by all plumeria is greatly misunderstood and misstated.

Well-qualified horticulturists have reviewed the status of phosphorus as it relates to plant function and stated there is no scientific evidence that excessive phosphorus is needed by plants for any reason. There is no evidence that excesses have any beneficial effect on blooming or healthy roots of plants in general, in fact, too much appears to be harmful.

No doubt all plants need phosphorus for normal function. Typically, USDA soil tests will show adequate or more often excessive amounts of phosphorus. The excess of phosphorus has several undesirable effects. It has been shown to interfere with a plant’s absorption of iron, manganese, and zinc, resulting in yellowing of leaves and poor health of the plant. Excesses may also interfere with the growth of beneficial fungi, called mycorrhizae. These fungi are normally present on most plant roots and assist the plant in absorbing water and nutrients. Without these fungi, plants must work harder than they would otherwise.

It takes practice to learn the signs identifying a missing nutrient or nutrients, but you can learn to do so, and some of the signs are common. A good practice is to carefully monitor the leaves of your plumeria for signs of nutrient deficiency and correct them with a better soil mix or with fertilizer.

Types of Fertilizers

Fertilizers are organic or inorganic. Organic fertilizers contain only plant or animal-based materials that are either a byproduct of naturally occurring processes, such as manures, leaves, and compost. Inorganic fertilizers also referred to as synthetic fertilizers, are manufactured artificially and contains minerals or synthetic chemicals. Inorganic fertilizers contain only nutrients; they are not used to combat Plumeria diseases or insects. Inorganic fertilizers do not improve the soil’s physical properties, whereas organic material such as compost does.

Granular fertilizers commonly have the NPK in the names such as “11-11-13”, or “6-12-6”. The numbers represent the percentages of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) in the fertilizer — 11% N, 11% P, 13% K. In this case, 34% of the mixture is made up of N-P-K, and the rest is inactive material used to help spread the fertilizer evenly or coating to extend the application rate.

Granular fertilizers are typically mixed into the potting mix, dissolved into the irrigation water or be applied on the soil surface. It is better to mix the fertilizer directly into the potting mix before planting or in the top few inches of soil because the roots can avoid or seek the fertilizer as they need it. It is better to add too little than too much. When applying fertilizer think about the size of your root system. A mature plumeria root system will need more fertilizer and a young seedling will need less fertilizer. Plumeria typically responds to granular fertilizers within two weeks.

Quick-release granular fertilizers are water soluble and readily available for plants to take up when they are appropriately placed at the right time.

Controlled-release granular fertilizers contain plant nutrients in a coated form that delays nutrient availability or extends its accessibility to the plant significantly longer than “quick release fertilizers” such as ammonium nitrate or urea, ammonium phosphate, and potassium chloride. Controlled-release fertilizers can dynamically release nutrients and meet the plants changing nutrient demand throughout its growth cycle, maximize nutrient use efficiency, and minimize environmental concerns.

Slow-release granular fertilizers have a slower release rate of the nutrient than conventional water-soluble fertilizers and controlled release fertilizers. The frequency, pattern, and duration of release are not well controlled by slow-release fertilizers because they are dependent on a microbial activity that is driven by soil moisture and temperature conditions. Slow-release fertilizers can occasionally be released very quickly when excessive moisture and high temperatures occur in the same time span.

Use of Control Release Fertilizers or Slow Release Fertilizers can reduce nutrient losses, increase nutrient-use efficiency, and protect the environment. Thus, the application of control release fertilizers or slow-release fertilizers is considered to be a Best Management Practice tool for crop production.

Foliar fertilizers are used in order to get the nutrients to the Plumeria quickly. They are specially formulated to apply directly on the leaves and be absorbed by the leaves, not by the roots. When Plumeria are acutely deficient in nutrients, foliar fertilizers often help ‘green them up’. Frequently, foliar fertilizers will only contain the micronutrients, since it is assumed that the macronutrients are available in the soil. However, some such as Hasta Gro contain both micronutrients and NPK.

Because foliar fertilizers are expensive, a short-term solution and they do not encourage strong root growth, they should be used in combination with granular fertilizers for a long-term solution.

When do Plumeria need nutrients?

Plumerias need nutrients most in the spring and summer during their most vigorous growth and need less and less as they slow down and start going into dormancy. Growth virtually ceases for winter in non-tropical regions when they need no water and no nutrients.

Dormancy is the state in which a plumeria exhibits little or no growth and in which most, if not all, metabolic activity ceases or slows down for a period of time. Dormancy evolved as a means of surviving unfavorable environmental conditions such as short days, cold temps and or drought.

Dormancy levels vary between by plumeria locations. In general, the number of plumeria that may acquire dormancy shows a trend to increase with geographical distance from the equator and correlates with the occurrence of seasons. Variation can also be found within different plumeria varieties.

I hope this information makes it easier to choose the right fertilizer and nutrients for your plumeria.

Common nutrient deficiency symptoms


Nitrogen: This is a mobile nutrient, which means that when nitrogen is deficient, Plumeria moves it from the older foliage to the younger, actively growing leaves. The older leaves (the ones lower on the stem of the tree) become yellow first, while the new leaves remain green.

Phosphorus: The entire plumeria is stunted, especially during early growth. Too much Phosphorus will not allow the fine roots to grow and take up nutrients. Depending on the cultivar, the leaves may become dull green, yellow or purple-tinged. The purpling of leaves is a classic symptom, but sometimes there are no color differences in leaves, so visual diagnosis is not always reliable. The purple color should not be confused with new leaves that often appear purple or red when they first flush out.

Potassium: Symptoms appear in older leaves first. These start to yellow at the edges and have some green at the base. Later, leaf edges turn brown and may crinkle or curl and small necrotic (dead) spots may appear. Plumeria may wilt, even though sufficient water is available in the substrate. When deficiencies are severe, leaves will die.

Calcium: This is difficult to detect because signs include slow growth and die-back of bud or root tips. Seedlings will have stubby little roots with brownish discoloration. The problem is most common in very acidic soils. A well-developed root system with many fine root hairs is important for calcium uptake.

Magnesium: This nutrient is commonly deficient in coarse-structured soils and in acidic soils. Uptake may be blocked if there is too much potassium in the soil. Like nitrogen, magnesium is a mobile nutrient, so deficiency symptoms show up in the older leaves first. These leaves show a very characteristic yellowing between the veins or ribs, and they appear streaked.

Sulphur: Plumeria will be slightly stunted. This is not a mobile nutrient, so the symptoms show up on younger leaves which are initially light green, but eventually develop scorched and curled margins. Dry areas can form along the margins and then spread inward to the leaf midrib.

Common nutrient deficiency symptoms


Micronutrient deficiencies are difficult to diagnose because often more than one nutrient is missing. Only the most common symptoms are listed below.

Iron: Deficiency is common on alkaline or calcareous soil (pH above 7). Younger leaves become yellow to white and dry up.

Manganese: The tissue between the vein’s mottles, while the veins remain green and are surrounded by a band of green tissue.

Copper: New leaves are yellow at the tips and often become twisted.

Boron: The deficiency affects the terminal bud which yellows, dries out and dies. Plumeria grows slowly.

Plumeria requires 13 nutrients in different quantities to grow well. Common deficiency symptoms help identify which nutrients are missing. Nutrient deficiencies should not be confused with the effects of too much or too little shade and water.

Link to good article on slow-released and controlled-released fertilizer:

Fertilizer and Nutrients Overview

Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer©

Excalibur is a proprietary formula developed by combining Florida Colors Nursery’s expertise growing plumeria with the latest advancements in nutrient technology, Florida Colors Nursery’s Excalibur fertilizers have proven to provide highly effective and efficient results.

We were able to formulate a supreme-quality fertilizer with an NPK of 11-11-13 for the 9 month and 11-11-14 for the 6 month designed specifically for plumeria. Introduce only a few years ago, Excalibur has become the standard which other fertilizers are judged for growing plumeria. Excalibur is just what you need to assure your plumeria is getting what it needs to grow and bloom at its full potential. With Excalibur your plumerias are receiving supreme-quality fertilizers and service from a plumeria grower you know and can trust.

Why Use Excalibur?

  • Excalibur: designed specifically for Plumeria
  • Excalibur: promotes healthy even plumeria growth
  • Excalibur: high quality 11-11-13 NPK granular fertilizer with Micronutrients
  • Excalibur: available as a 6 or 9-month controlled release fertilizer
  • Excalibur: designed to release nutrients as your Plumeria needs them to thrive 
  • Excalibur: uses water sensitive poly coated ingredients, releases only when moisture is present
  • Excalibur: formulated by Florida Colors Nursery with over 30 years of experience growing Plumeria
  • Excalibur: not only sold by Florida Colors Nursery but we use it on all of our plumerias
  • Excalibur: exclusively sold by Florida Colors Nursery or an approved agent
  • Excalibur: backed by one of the largest national fertilizer companies
  • Excalibur: approved to sell in every state the Continental US and Hawaii

Typical Usage Rates:

  • 4  -4 1/2″ = 3/4 tbsp.
  • 6″ – 1 gal pot = 2 tbsp.
  • 3 gal pot = 3 tbsp.
  • 5 gal pot – 4 tbsp. (1 oz = 2 tbsp.)
  • Grown in the ground, use approximately 1 – 2 tablespoons per inch of trunk dia. Depending on how many branches the tree has.

Excalibur is a controlled release polyon coated fertilizer designed to last approximately 6 months for Excalibur VI and 9 months for Excalibur IX (depending on which you use). It is applied dry and is best to cover with about 1″ of soil for even distribution, it needs water to release nutrients.

How it feeds your plants:

  • Application of Water
  • Release of Nutrients
  • Decomposition of Poly coating

Advantages of controlled-release fertilizers are that the nutrients are available gradually over time. This means that the gardener can fertilize less often, and the nutrients are provided slowly and steadily. This is how most plants prefer to be fed and helps them grow well. Granular fertilizers are easier to control because you can actually see how much fertilizer you’re using and where it’s being dispersed.

Fertilizers are a mix of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K). The ratio will be indicated by three numbers (the first is nitrogen, the middle number is phosphorus, and the third is potassium). We recommend a balanced fertilizer with micronutrients for plumeria with an NPK of 11-11-13 or similar to Excalibur.

Micronutrients – The Hidden Story…And, Often Only Delivered by Slow or Controlled Release Fertilizers!

There are several nutrients essential to plant growth and health that are only needed in very small quantities. These are manganese, copper, iron, chlorine, and molybdenum and zinc.

  • Chlorine is necessary for osmosis and ionic balance; it also plays a role in photosynthesis.
  • Copper is a component of some enzymes and of vitamin A. Symptoms of copper deficiency include browning of leaf tips and chlorosis.
  • Boron plays a key role in a diverse range of plant functions including cell wall formation and stability, maintenance of structural and functional integrity of biological membranes, movement of sugar or energy into growing parts of plants, and pollination and seed set.
  • Iron is essential for chlorophyll synthesis, which is why an iron deficiency results in chlorosis.
  • Manganese activates some important enzymes involved in chlorophyll formation. Manganese deficient plants will develop chlorosis between the veins of its leaves. The availability of manganese is partially dependent on soil pH.
  • Molybdenum is essential to plant health. Molybdenum is used by plants to reduce nitrates into usable forms. Some plants use it for nitrogen fixation, thus it may need to be added to some soils before seeding legumes.
  • Zinc participates in chlorophyll formation and also activates many enzymes. Symptoms of zinc deficiency include chlorosis and stunted growth.
Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer©

Is Excalibur VI or Excalibur IX best for you

Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer
Example for Excalibur IX, 9 month release rate.
Example for Excalibur IX, 9-month controlled release rate.

Excalibur is formulated to allow the releasing the nutrients to correspond with your Plumeria’s growing requirements.

Average Temperature: critical factor since the releasing of nutrients is activated by moisture and temperature.

How we get the desired release rate: The number of coatings is manipulated for the timing of nutrients released as plumeria need them.

  1. Dosage: Application rates, plus combination and percentage of nutrients.
  2. Regional: Accounting for climate’s temperatures and average rainfall

Excalibur VI is a controlled release plumeria fertilizer is designed for the short growing seasons of around 6 months. Excalibur VI is also great for the mid-season additions and when transplanting during the season.

Excalibur VI is also great for the growing season that goes almost all year. In Southern Florida with a growing season from February to December. Apply every 6 months twice a year.

Excalibur VI is also good for the Short growing seasons in California and cooler parts of the country.

Excalibur IX (now with Boron) is a controlled release plumeria fertilizer designed growing seasons of around 9 months. This is perfect for growing plumeria in Texas and Northern Florida with a typical season from March to November. Apply Excalibur IX once a year at the beginning of the year.

Excalibur IX (now with Boron) is also good for Arizona, with a short hot season requires more watering, causing it to last only 7 or 8 months.

Excalibur VI and Excalibur IX are almost identical, the only difference is the thickness of the granule coatings allowing 6 months to release nutrients over a shorter period of time. The thicker coating adds slightly more sulfur to Excalibur IX and Boron has been added to Excalibur IX.

Visit http://planthardiness.ars.usda.gov/PHZMWeb/ for more info on USDA Zones.

Is Excalibur VI or Excalibur IX best for you

Why Use Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer

Why Use Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer

(Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer is a Florida Colors Nursery Brand Name)

Follow this link for all sizes offered: https://floridacolorsplumeria.com/plumeria-fertilizer-and-nutrients

Excalibur VI (6 months controlled release) NPK 11-11-13

Excalibur IX (9 months controlled release) NPK 11-11-13

Why Create Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer?

After trying every fertilizer you can think of and searching for Fertilizers specifically formulated for Plumeria and not finding anything worth using, we decided we had to have a professional company help us develop a custom mixed fertilizer. We knew from years of experience that Plumeria does best when you feed them a balanced fertilizer that provides nutrients as Plumeria need them. We believe that healthier plants will result in better growing habits and more blooms.

So to create the best possible fertilizer for Plumeria, we needed to have one formulated to our specifications just for Plumeria. The fertilizer had to have a balance of needed nutrients but also had to have a dependable controlled release rate for the entire growing season. We wanted to market nationwide so we choose Harrell’s Fertilizers, one of the largest fertilizer companies in the US. After many years of experimenting and research, we came up with a controlled released 11-11-13 poly cote with micronutrients that lasts 9-12 months. The release rate was formulated to release the nutrients as Plumeria needs them over the growing season. The formula is activated by moisture and heat, but mostly by moisture. Releasing more when you water more, minimizes the release rate during dry months and dormancy.

Excalibur IX and Excalibur VI are Florida Colors Nursery exclusive custom mixed fertilizers that have been formulated specifically for Plumeria. The ingredients are formulated to provide your plumeria with the nutrients it needs to thrive. The poly cote has been formulated to release the nutrients when plumeria needs it most.

A controlled release fertilizer designed to be used once and last 6 for Excalibur VI or 9 months for Excalibur XI. We produced two different fertilizers to match the different growing seasons. For example, Texas and Florida would use 9 month and areas with shorter growing seasons would us 6 month.

Excalibur is a custom mix fertilizer using controlled release technology formulated specifically for Plumeria. Excalibur is tested at 86 degrees, not 70 degrees. Excalibur uses a combination of Multi-coat and Poly-coat technology to achieve the release rate, which is moisture activated and based on osmosis.

Sold online in 64oz and 128oz containers. It is also available in larger containers for local pickup only.

Typical Usage Rates:

  • 4-4 1/2″ pot = 3/4 tablespoon.
  • 6″ – 1 gal pot = 2 tablespoons.
  • 3 gal pot = 3 tablespoons.
  • 5 gal pot – 4 tablespoons.
  • In the ground 1 tablespoon per 1” trunk dia.

How to use Excalibur IX and Excalibur VI
Excalibur is a controlled release water-soluble granular fertilizer, it is applied dry and must be watered in. It helps to improve efficiency by covering the granules with 1/2″-1″ of soil. Granular fertilizers are easier to control because you can actually see how much fertilizer you’re using and where it’s being dispersed. Advantages of controlled release fertilizers are that the nutrients are available gradually over time. This means that the gardener can fertilize less often, and the nutrients are provided slowly and steadily.

Fertilizers are a mix of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K). The ratio will be indicated by three numbers (the first is nitrogen, the middle number is phosphorus, and the third is potassium). We recommend using a balanced fertilizer with micronutrients for plumeria.

Micronutrients – The Hidden Story…And, Often Only Delivered by Controlled Release Fertilizers!

There are several nutrients essential to plant growth and health that are only needed in very small quantities. These are manganese, copper, iron, chlorine, and molybdenum and zinc.

Chlorine is necessary for osmosis and ionic balance; it also plays a role in photosynthesis.

Copper is a component of some enzymes and of vitamin A. Symptoms of copper deficiency include browning of leaf tips and chlorosis.

Iron is essential for chlorophyll synthesis, which is why an iron deficiency results in chlorosis.

Manganese activates some important enzymes involved in chlorophyll formation. Manganese deficient plants will develop chlorosis between the veins of its leaves. The availability of manganese is partially dependent on soil PH.

Molybdenum is essential to plant health. Molybdenum is used by plants to reduce nitrates into usable forms. Some plants use it for nitrogen fixation, thus it may need to be added to some soils before seeding legumes.

Zinc participates in chlorophyll formation and also activates many enzymes. Symptoms of zinc deficiency include chlorosis and stunted growth.

Also see Bioblast, Vitazyme, Root Activator for a complete feeding program.

Follow this link for all sizes offered: /plumeria-fertilizer/

Excalibur VI (6 month controlled release) /excalibur-6-month-plumeria-fertilizer/ NPK 11-11-13

Excalibur IX (9 monthcontrolled release) /excalibur-6-month-plumeria-fertilizer/ NPK 11-11-13

Why Use Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer

Plumeria Care

Plumeria Care Regimen

I would like to share our vision of the best Plumeria care regimen for all plumeria growers. I hope the following helps you with your goals and plans for the year.

The goal is to know what, when and why, so you can improve every year by giving your plumeria the best growing conditions. Making a plan and documenting all adjustments will allow you to look back and hopefully determine where you can make improvements.

At the beginning of each season, we examine what we did last year and try to determine how we can improve our methods and products. The following is an outline for our Plumeria Care Regimen at Florida Colors Nursery. Please keep in mind your growing environment and how it differs from our Zone 10B in South Florida. The start of your plan should correspond to when you are past the threat of a frost or freeze. You should also make a plan to protect you plumeria from cold weather, just in case you get caught.

Before your spring growing season

When: At the beginning of your growing season or before you modify your soil or add nutrients.

What: I highly suggest getting a Soil Test to determine what nutrients your soil has or doesn’t have. The more you know about your soil and environment the better decisions you can make about caring for your plumeria.

How: Your local agriculture office or local nursery can perform soil tests. There are also commercial companies and self-test kits available.

Why: The soil test will indicate what nutrients are present and if they are locked up. A too high or too low pH will make it difficult or impossible for your Plumeria to absorb nutrients efficiently.

Removing damaged branches and roots

When: Before putting them out for spring.

What: Start by checking your plumeria for signs of insects, branch or root rot, soft branches, bent branches or broken branches.

How: Cut all damaged branches until you see all white when possible. Trim roots until you see white or green.

Why: Remove dead, damaged and diseased branches and roots to help prevent insect & decay organisms from entering the plumeria. Eliminate crossing branches to prevent damage caused by their rubbing against each other.

Checking and Spraying tips for insects

When: Before putting them out for spring from storage or as leaves and blooms start to grow

Greenhouses & pots, you should have been controlling pest all winter. But it is still a good idea to treat before taking out. I suggest you spray two weeks before taking them out and again right after taking out for Spring.
In the ground, I suggest you start spraying as soon as you see the leaves emerging. (Do not spray in direct sunlight or on dehydrated plants)

What: Suggest – Summit Year-Round Spray Oil

How: Spray or mist to cover the entire plant.

Why: By treating with Year-Round Spray Oil or similar you kill the insects and eggs. Giving your plants a good healthy start. Horticultural oil controls insects without synthetic chemicals. Mites including Rust Mite / Spider Mite (also eggs), Scales including Black Scale, California Red Scale, Whitefly and  Blackfly (also eggs), Sooty Mold.

Plumeria waking up from Dormancy

When: As soon as you see the sign of your plumeria waking up and if the weather allows.

What: Soak your plumeria roots with a mixture of water, root activator (Carl Pools Root Activator) and a bio stimulate (Vitazyme) to help give them a kick-start.

What we suggest: A mixture of Vitazyme and Carl Pool’s Root Activator.

How: Soak your bare rooted plants for about 1 hour. Soak your potted plants from bottom up or drench. Drench you’re in ground plants with 1 to 2 gals.

Why: A bio stimulate (Vitazyme) helps the overall health of the plants and the root activator (Carl Pool Root Activator) give the roots a kick-start with what they need to wake up and start growing.

Watering – Water heavy for the first two days and water heavy every other day for the first week. After that water as needed.

Re-potting or adding soil

When: In the Spring or when they outgrow their pots or when they need additional soil.

What: An excellent well-balanced and well-draining soil. I prefer to use soils without fertilizers and a good decomposed natural mulch without additives.

What we suggest: A good soil mixture is 1/3 Canadian Sphagnum Peat Moss, 1/3 coir and 1/3 Perlite (horticultural grade). Or potting soil with a little extra perlite added or a similar soil mix.

How: The goal is to provide new soil to add back washed away nutrients to the roots. Gently shake off as much of the old soil as possible and fill in with fresh soil. Water in well and add more soil as needed. For repotting we add decomposed natural mulch, 1”-2” in the bottom and 1”-2” on top of pots depending on the pot size. This adds some organic matter as it decomposes and helps keep the weeds out and moisture in.

Why: Fresh soil provides aeration, retains moisture and adds back nutrients that were washed out or used up by the plants. Over time, the organic materials that the soil mix is made will break down and decompose to the point where you will lose the drainage and aeration properties that are inherent in container media. When that happens, discard the old soil to the compost pile or to the garden and refill the container with fresh soil mix.

Mulching – Use decomposed mulch to add nutrients and organic matter. The mulch on the top also helps keep weeds down and helps retain moisture. In the ground, cover the ground with natural mulch partially decomposed up to 12” deep each year. If you use fresh mulch, the decomposition will rob your plants of nitrogen.

Watering – Always water well for the next two or three days.

First fertilizing – Granular

When:   At the beginning of the growing season

What: Use a balanced granular controlled release fertilizer with micronutrients.

What we suggest: Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer VI with a NPK of 11-11-14 and Excalibur Plumeria Fertilizer IX with a NPK of 11-11-14, both with micronutrients are designed specifically for Plumeria or a similar fertilizer

How: Cover the fertilizer with 1″-2″ of soil and water well.

Why: Granular fertilizer is designed to feed your plumeria from the roots, from the bottom up. Healthy roots are the key to producing healthy plants. We have found that a balanced NPK fertilizer with micronutrients produce healthy growth, promotes blooming, bloom size and seed production. It is essential to use a balanced fertilizer not high in nitrogen, phosphorus or potassium. A balanced fertilizer with micronutrients will also help correct nutrient deficiencies.

Foliage Fertilizing – Throughout the growing season

When:   From every two weeks to every month.

What:    A Balanced fertilizer with micronutrients.

What we suggest: Bioblast with micronutrients and an NPK of 7-7-7. We also spray with Vitazyme every time we spray.

How:    Foliar feeding in the early morning or late evening, avoid applying in hot sunshine.

Why:    Foliar feeding is used to get the nutrients to the leaves and branches faster, but doesn’t last as long as granular fertilizers. Used to improve the overall health from the top down and give the leaves and blooms a quick shot of nutrients during stressful times.

Plumeria Care