Frangipani Maintenance

Frangipani in full foliage in April

Frangipani isn’t a plant I grew up with and it doesn’t produce anything edible so, though I love my frangipani tree with its fragrant white summer flowers, I’ve put no effort into figuring out how to keep it happy and healthy. But when a recent Better Homes and Garden show started talking about caring for a frangipani tree I sat up and took notice. The next day Frank and I went into the backyard to put what we had learnt into practice.

There is some black crud (maybe not the proper horticultural term) that gets into frangipanis and then starts rotting back along the branches to the trunk and will eventually kill the tree. To get rid of it you’ve got to cut the offending bits back until there is no more black evident in the cut (cleaning shears with methylated spirits between each cut to deter the disease from spreading).

Frangipani with sick branches

Once cut, the frangipani is one of those plants that bleeds like crazy. You patch it with a bit of mud and she’ll be right!

Pruned frangipani with mud patch

We did quite a few branches then lost enthusiasm. Our tree always loses tips and it seems to form another and keep growing while the sick bit withers, dies and falls off. Maybe we don’t actually have the black crud the TV show was talking about.

About Laura Rittenhouse

I'm an American-Australian author, gardener and traveller. Go to my writing website: www.laurarittenhouse.com for more. If you're trying to find my gardening blog, it's here.
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2 Responses to Frangipani Maintenance

  1. ambrasancin says:

    Thanks for the advice about the ‘mudpack’. Didn’t know about this and when I cut our frangipani back every so often, I wonder if it’s hurting when it bleeds.

    • How funny that you wonder about the hurting! I really don’t like cutting plants that show they’ve been damaged. It’s bad enough throwing healthy chunks of a plant away, if it bleeds, my heart bleeds with it 🙂

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