Sunday, March 11, 2012

Beheaded Adenium

Over a year ago (or was it even earlier than that?) Rika heard of my blossoming desert rose and suggested to me to cut it right after it was done blossoming. She said it would then grow several branches and I'd have the chance to see more blossoms the next year.

I feel very deeply for my plants... to a point where I won't cut them even if it was better for them if I did, even if not cutting them means letting them grow crooked or otherwise wrong. So I didn't take her advice, at least not immediately.

Last November I looked at my three self grown adeniums and thought they have all grown quite long, maybe cutting them isn't such a bad idea after all. But I still couldn't get myself to cut the one that blossoms every summer.

So instead, as an experiment, I cut off the head of the biggest one with the biggest stem.

Adenium obesum on March 11, 2012 (cut in November 2011)

I simply took my pruning shears and cut off the head at a height I thought was good. There was some fluid coming out of the cut which I dried with a tissue but then the cut soon dried.

A couple of days later the cut had closed and looked like this:

Adenium obesum cut at the top of the stem

I guess I'll cut the rest too, next fall... ;) Because, look what's happening now:

Adenium obesum growing new branches, March 11, 2012

Adenium obesum growing a new branch, March 11, 2012

Adenium obesum growing new branches, March 11, 2012

So, I'll keep you all updated on how this goes on and a big Thank You to Rika for the advice! :)


  1. Yes pruning is one way to stimulate new growth, though you may not have to make such a drastic cut. Shortening the branches by half will do just as well. The most important chore that one have to do is to feed it with lots of organic fertiliser.

  2. Thank you for your comment!
    This adenium had no branches (none of mine do). There was only this one stem and then maybe two or three leaves at the top.
    So the cut was not as drastic as it may sound in this post. :)

    Unfortunately I have no "before" pics for direct comparison. But I am very glad that it survived seemingly without any complaint. And I will soon start giving them fertilizer again.

  3. Great move with the cut. I probably would've been more drastic and cut off most of the stem. Lol. Some plants can be quite tough though. I look forward to the updates.