Need ID of Inherited Spindly Plant

Suzi AKA DesertDanceJuly 25, 2012

We inherited 2 sadly neglected plants from a family estate, and I am clueless as to what they are, or what to do with them. I also posted in tropicals. I don't want them to die!

I call this one Marions Spindly. Can't figure out how to post 2 pictures, so can you ID this one?

Thanks!

Suzi

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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

This looks like Dracaena marginata also, that's had more light. Are the edges of the leaves reddish?

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 11:43AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

YES! The edges are absolutely reddish! Thanks so much! I will now look that up and get info on how to care for it.

My DH hated the tree, but I knew it would come back, so we pruned it, soaked it, and it has several new leaf clusters starting.

Thanks so much for the ID! Any suggestions as to where to put it would be great!

Suzi

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 12:02PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

You're welcome. Where to put inside or outside? I may not be the best to advise, not at all familiar with your climate, weather, latitude, etc... Compare to mine, though. It's very hot & humid here, my Dracs go outside as soon as it stops frosting at night, back in when it does. They are on south-facing front porch, some at either end which means full sun until about noon or full sun after about 2 pm. Intense rays, 31 degrees north latitude. While outside, I don't use the saucer part of the pot, let dry, then soak well.

Good job giving it a prune. Looks like it will fill in nicely. What's the soil like?

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 12:20PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

The soil looks like regular potting soil. HUGE roots on the top. After soaking for a day (took that long to get the top wet), the top roots are damp.

Our climate is hot and dry. Desert! Mine will be on a North Facing back porch. No room on the front!

We will buy a nice big pot, and repot using Al's gritty mix, and see what happens! Thanks for the advice!
Suzi

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 12:37PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

This one looks more Yucca-ish to me.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 10:24PM
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teengardener1888(NY Albany 5a)

No this is certainly dragon tree(dracaena marginata`tricolor`). I have one see

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 9:54AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Teen's picture is not the same plant as the one at the top of this thread. Doesn't anyone else think that the leaves are too short too be D. Marginata?

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 1:08PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Not considering that it was just pruned, but if you're hesitant, I am too.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 1:52PM
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birdsnblooms

Rhizo, you are right..Desert's plant is a Dracaena, but doesn't look like marginata.
Unless tips were all cut...

Your Dracaena isn't getting enough light. It doesn't need direct south or west summer sun, instead bright light from an east or 5' or so from unobstructed west/south.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 1:56PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Stepped out to take some pics for desertdance to compare.

Dracaena marginata:
Smaller leaf from a time when it had less light:

Wider new leaf:

Tops cuttings, D. marginata with D. marginata 'tricolor'

D. marginata 'tricolor':

TG, I couldn't see that yours is 'tricolor' from that pic.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 2:01PM
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birdsnblooms

Got this Dracaena at HD last year under 5.00. Don't know its speices, but has shorther leaves than marginata.

Dracaena 'Marginata'

The tallest plant is green w/red edges. Toni

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 3:25PM
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birdsnblooms

Sorry, found an older pic..No-ID Dracaena was purchased at Jewel's Grocery, 5/2010 for 2.99...

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 3:28PM
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stewartsjon

OP's plant is 100% a D. Marginata, with shorter leaves because some are new shoots - nice to see someone actually prune one of these, lol.

Care wise, OP, keep it pretty dry, pretty light position and pretty warm. Personally I'd cut the least interesting (right hand?) shoot off about a foot above the soil, cut it pretty short and shove it in the compost - you've a good chance that it'll regrow and the cut off end will resprout >1 heads. Otherwise it'll always be this long and spindly.

If you keep pruning them for like 20 years you end up with a mass of heads like my pic (here's one the Dutch prepared earlier, lol).


Hopefulauthor's first plant is possibly a D. Anita. Are the leaves a bit rougher to the touch than a marginata and no red margin? 

We went through a craze for them at work but IMHO they are troublesome compared to Margis.

<img  data-hzurl="http://st.houzz.com/simgs/19d29b3704b36feb_8-5742/home-design.jpg" data-pin-no-hover="true" src="http://st.houzz.com/simgs/19d29b3704b36feb_8-5742/home-design.jpg" width="500" height="666"/>
    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 6:26AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Ah well, I'm still not sold on that theory, stewartsjon. But that doesn't matter......hopefully our original poster will be able to take good care of these inherited plants; I know that they have sentimental value.

Desertdance, they do seem to be in less than pristine condition...just as you said. I wish you good luck in getting them in some sort of shape.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 7:41AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Toni, wish we could hear you jammin' on that guitar sometime! Or is that hubby's?

Jon, do Brits call all pot soil compost? I think I will do that (your pic of the office plant above) to one of the tops that I trimmed off of my tree. The tree used to look like something from Dr. Seuss until the wind blew it off the porch and broke one of the trunks, then I finished the job of making it look like a "regular" tree again, that's why I have all of those tops cuttings in a pot.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 9:16AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

I put Spindly outside after giving it a good soak, and the wind blew it over and broke off one of the newest green shoots! I put it in water hoping for roots, but now I'll just stick it in potting soil and see what happens.

I will definitely have my husband cut the barest longest trunk in half, stick that part in soil, and hope for fullness in the future! We need to buy a bigger pot because there is NO room for any more trunks in the pot we've got!

Thanks for all your opinions and advice!
Suzi

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 10:05AM
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stewartsjon

"Jon, do Brits call all pot soil compost?"

Yep, compost comes in a bag, soil comes out of the ground.

That pretty much covers the British English usage!

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 10:47AM
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birdsnblooms

Jon, the leaves on Dracaeana no species feels slightly rougher compared to marginata.

Purple, the only notes I can play on the guitar is the begining of White Rabbit and Jingle Bells, lol...guitars are dh's.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 12:15PM
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scsva(7/VA)

Toni: Your front yard looks gorgeous!!!

Susan

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 9:26PM
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stewartsjon

'Jon, the leaves on Dracaeana no species feels slightly rougher compared to marginata.'

I reckon it's an Anita then. Googling, I got a reference back to this site too.

Here is a link that might be useful: E-how care guide

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 3:11AM
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birdsnblooms

Susan, thank you, I appreciate it.

Jon, thanks for the link.
Dracaenas, 'excluding Goldiana,' are fairly care-free. Wouldn't you say so? Toni

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 12:14PM
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stewartsjon

Yeah, Dracaenas are easy to look after - just keep pretty dry.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2012 at 4:14AM
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birdsnblooms

What keeps dry?

    Bookmark   July 30, 2012 at 9:01AM
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stewartsjon

Sorry, I write like I think - in shorthand!

Keep the plant pretty dry and you can't go wrong. If the soil surface looks wet, it doesn't need water.

:-)

    Bookmark   July 31, 2012 at 3:47AM
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birdsnblooms

SJ, I've grown Dracaenas 20+ yrs. lol.

As I said, easy...except for Goldianna. I want to try another, but they're only found in Thailand.. Toni

    Bookmark   July 31, 2012 at 1:05PM
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stewartsjon

Never heard of Goldianna!

    Bookmark   July 31, 2012 at 3:04PM
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birdsnblooms

SJ, D. 'Goldiana' is probably one of the most beautiful Dracaenas ever.

Arrived from Thailand 3/2009. Died during winter 2010.. needs a LOT more humidity than my house offers.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2012 at 3:09PM
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