When the Dragon Tree Blooms

What a fascinating title! When the Dragon Tree Blooms almost sounds like some sort of science fiction or fantasy story. Or maybe one of those sultry romances that take place in the jungle or in some isolated place near the desert. Or perhaps not.

When will my Dragon Tree Bloom?

That is a realistic question that people who have a dragon tree frequently ask their tree specialist. The answer is both simple and complex. In general, dragon trees that are ready to bloom, bloom in the spring. That’s the simple part.

The complex part concerns when the dragon tree will be ready to bloom. For starters, dragon trees that are grown indoors are not likely to bloom. The general temperature conditions, the resources provided in the container and so on, are not conducive to blooming. In some ways, it is like having a pair of exotic animals. When you have a breeding pair, it seems as if they would be likely to mate, but housed in captivity, many mammals, especially the big cats, do not.

Dragon trees are kind of like that. Picky, that’s what they are.

But I really want my Dragon Tree to Bloom. How can I encourage it?

  1. Be patient. Dragon trees need to be at least seven, and possibly even fifteen years old before they will flower. That assumes good conditions that keep that vegetable dragon happy. One owner noted that his dragon tree was delayed because it fell over and grew sideways for a while.
  2. If you have a potted Dragon, give it some time outdoors. Dragon trees are slow-growing, resilient plants. They can handle low-light, chilly temperatures, hot temperatures, and the occasional missed watering. But, like many plants, they need that opportunity to spread their leaves in the spring sunshine to get going with that business of growing up to be a big tree that puts on blooms.
  3. Be slow to repot your Dragon. Being a trifle root bound is actually good for your dragon tree. It should not be repotted more than once every two years or so. When you do, move up to a wider pot than the one you had before to encourage production of a good base.
  4. Do not give your Dragon Wet Feet. Although dragon trees are not good for cats, they have the same opinion of excess water. Your dragon tree does need a generous drink now and then, but it truly does not enjoy being soggy or water-logged. A crumbly soil, rich with compost, that drains well but not too fast is going to be favored by your Dragon Tree.
  5. Feed your Dragon. While your dragon tree isn’t likely to climb out of its pot and rampage around the house setting things on fire because it is hungry, good nutrition leads to good growth. Good growth leads to good blooms.
  6. How big should my Dragon be when it blooms? That really depends on what kind of dragon tree it is. Some species are tall and slender, some are short and stout. Dragon trees have several different types, and each behaves a little bit differently. When your dragon tree blooms, the main stalk is as big as it is going to ever get.
  7. What should I do when my Dragon Blooms? You can do nothing at all. Dragon trees managed on their own just fine for hundreds, maybe thousands of years. But if you want to hurry the process of getting your dragon tree to start branching out into the distinctive shape, you can let the blooms mature into dark, red fruit, and then cut the stalk. Where the bloom stalk was located is where your tree will start to branch out.

What will happen if my Dragon Tree never blooms?

If your dragon tree never blooms, you will still have a lovely foliage plant. You can force branching by pruning the tree during the summer growing season. Try not to trim it during the winter, when it will go into a natural dormancy state. In fact, for good health, it needs some dormancy.

So when will your Dragon Bloom? When it is ready to bloom. Give it a good place to grow. If you live in zone 10-12, planting it outside will help encourage blooms. But if your dragon must live indoors in winter, wheel it out into the sunshine as soon as the weather is stable. If it is old enough, if it feels like it, if the stars properly align, why, then, it just might bloom.

 

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