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Plumeria Tree Growth Habit

Question: How big will my plumeria grow?

Answer: It depends.

Tall Afrique in back right; semi-compact Jubilee in front

It's one of the most common questions we get! Let's take a look at this topic.

If you want a great looking tree, a great growth habit is as important as the beauty of the flowers.

After decades of seedling selection from 10s of thousands of our own seeds, we offer many varieties that produce beautiful trees. Beginning with Divine and MiniWhite over a decade ago, we've place a special emphasis on breeding plumeria trees with a miniature or compact growth habit since they are ideal for containers and small spaces.

Many factors go into the size and shape of your plumeria tree. Here's a few to consider:

Mini White in pot

Your plant's growth habit

  • Mature tree size: Miniature, Compact, Semi Compact, Medium, Tall. Each of these sizes has progressively longer branches, resulting in a larger tree profile.

  • Flower production / Branching: Since plumeria trees branch after blooming, more flowers mean more branches. More branch tips result in more flowers!

Moonglo mother tree, tall grower

Your local climate​​

  • Length of your growing season

  • Amount of sunlight your tree receives​​

  • Summer heat and humidity

Your cultivation practices

  • In ground vs. in pots

  • Fertilizer usage

  • Pruned or natural growth

Growth habit observed in our Northern Thailand groves

As part of our grove management, we watch, typically over many years, each seedling bloom and grow. Each seedling has to meet all of our flower and growth habit standards before it earns a Jungle Jack name, otherwise it gets chopped down. We look at how robustly it grows, how well it flowers and branches, and the overall shape of the tree.

  • Vigorous, fast growing trees grow into a mature tree quickly. Slow growing means it takes a little longer, but remember, this is not equal to a dwarf growth habit. Our miniatures are very strong growers, producing tons of flowers and branches!

  • The number of new branches produced after flowering or pruning is determined by the tree's genetics. The more branches the tree creates, the denser the structure.

  • Long branches create an open, airy look; short branches create a compact, bushy appearance. Our miniature and compact plumerias have naturally short branches that grow shorter over time, and excellent branching (typically 3-5 new branches).

  • The overall tree profile, ranging from a tall canopy to a shrub shape, is an important choice when designing your garden. Tall vertical growers, such as Nirvana, are excellent as background trees or by pathways. Miniature or compact growth habit is ideal for pot culture, such as the lovely Divine, seen here.

To help our fans select the right variety for the right spot, click on our new Browse gallery to see examples of the size and shape of mature trees.

We're also populating our Online Shop with expanded descriptions and more photos, particularly of tree examples.

Semi-compact Bird of Paradise mother tree

Photos of older varieties, like this semi-compact Bird of Paradise tree, show large, mature trees. This particular photo shows the 15+ year-old mother tree, grown from Jungle Jack seed.

Photos of more recent introductions, like this 4-year-old miniature Mystique, show smaller trees. This example grows in our production grove, and was a cutting off the mother tree.

Miniature Mystique tree

Remember, we harvest cuttings from our Thai groves, so some photos reflect the shapes created by years of heavy pruning, like this Inca Gold tree.

Medium sized Inca Gold tree

We hope this helps you envision the size and shape of your Jungle Jack plumeria trees.

Take a look, and let us know what you think!

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