Posts Tagged ‘Dracaena marginata’

Erika’s Collection of Houseplants

Monday, November 7th, 2011

My friend Erika recently graduated from Green Thumb University. And with her confidence soaring, she went out and bought a bunch of houseplants. Exciting news!

Erika sent in some pictures of her growing collection (pun intended) for our critiques, comments, and tips.

Here we see a nice little Aloe plant. This plant looks healthy and strong. Except for needing a larger container in the near future, I’d say it looks good. Make sure to let it dry out completely between waterings.  In my experience, Aloe grows best in Terra Cotta containers like this one, because these containers dry out faster than plastic or ceramic.



Next we have a lucious Arrowhead vine. This plant also looks healthy and strong. Arrowhead vines thrive in low-light conditions, which makes them a perfect candidate for fluorescent-lighted offices. The constant “cool” light is perfect for this plant, which really does appear to be thriving.



Here we see a small Dracaena marginata sitting next to what I can only assume was a wig from someone’s Halloween costume. Dracaena marginata likes high light, and will thrive in a south, west, or even east-facing window. Allow the soil to dry out somewhat between waterings– the plant should never become mummified, but should be over-watered either. Also be careful not to over-fertilize D. marginata, as they are among the slower-growing tropicals.



Here we have a nice looking Pothos cutting. These are also great office plants as they thrive under a mellow fluorescent light. This plant looks like was taken as a cutting and has developed quite a root system. It could be allowed to continue to grow in water, or transplanted to soil. If you decide to transplant it, make sure to prune the roots back before you do.



Next we have a Spider plant and a Jade plant. The spider plant appears to be rooted in water, and thriving. This could also be transplanted into soil–trim it’s roots when you do and watch it double in size. In soil, Spider plants do not like to be over-watered or over-fed. They are pretty low-maintenance plants though, so I feel like the more I write about them the greater chance I have of confusing you. Whatever you’re doing with this guy, it is working. Are these plants under a desk lamp?

I would also recommend letting the Jade plant dry out in between waterings. I’ve heard that these guys grow differently in CA as they do here in VT, but Jade is still a succulent plant so make sure not to drown it!



This is a succulent, a Sedum species I think. These guys are easy propagated by leaf cuttings, and it looks like this guy has dropped some leaves that are ready to go! Plant these leaves in a well-draining cactus and succulent soil mix and watch as a new plantlet grows from the rooted leaf. Once you’ve planted the cutting, keep it out of direct light for a few days and then treat it exactly like the parent plant, making sure to let it dry out somewhat between waterings.



Last but certainly not least, we have one of my all-time favorite houseplants: the Wandering jew. Cuttings like this root easily in soil or water. Make sure to continually pinch out the terminal growing tips to encourage lateral growth, or else these plants will get long and leggy quick. Be careful of their delicate stem too, which break easily making new cuttings for you when you don’t even want them. I’d let this one continue to grow in his watery home, but sometime when you get a whole bunch of cuttings like this you can plant them in soil.



Thanks for sending in these pictures Erika! Let us know if you have any more questions. Looks like you’re well on your way to houseplant success!

Dracaena marginata (dragon tree) care sheet

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

Dracaenas make great houseplants. These guys really like the east window, which provides them with a few hours of direct sun every day. They can dry out between waterings too, which makes them really easy to care for.

I purchased two of these after they had been cut back once; they sprouted three new tips on each stem. I recently pinched them back (in an effort to keep them compact) and rooted one of the tips in water (see Dracaena marginata tip cutting).

Have specific questions about dragon tree care? Leave a comment!

Dracaena marginata tip cutting

Friday, August 7th, 2009

I pinched this little guy off of my Dracaena and dropped him in a shot glass full of water.

I had heard that Dracaena don’t really root like this, so I was surprised when it had a root after only a week and a half!

I potted it in a 2″ plastic container, and it is currently sitting in a north-facing window.