Dracaena marginata - care, cutting and augmentation

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Dracaena marginata - care, cutting and augmentation: marginata

The Dracaena marginata is a perfect roommate for hobby gardeners, who like to approach the care of their ornamental plants with shirtsleeves. With its slender trunk and the margined, elongated leaves, the dragon tree stretches meter-long without being coddled for this masterpiece. The tropical plant has a steep career as one of the most popular indoor plants worldwide.
The proof of the following instructions for care, cutting and propagating, which contains no horticultural stumbling blocks even for beginners.


The dragon tree owes its fearsome name to two central attributes: it replaces fallen leaves quickly, just as a dragon lets new heads grow. In addition, the sap is colored reddish, like dragon's blood. It follows that a Dracaena marginata forgive minor care mistakes good-naturedly and let grow new leaves without further ado. Of course, it does not have to come to throw leaves, if the following care instructions are heeded.


In the dim light of tropical rainforests, the Dracaena marginata thrives under the canopy of the giant jungle giants. With bright sunshine, the plant can therefore make little friends. Temperate light conditions are more suitable for her.
  • partially shaded location with morning or evening sun
  • in direct sunlight at noon shadow
  • warm temperatures of 15 to 30° C
  • Humidity of more than 60 percent
As long as the lighting conditions at the chosen location yield more than 700 lux, the dragon tree will gladly take a seat there. Incidentally, he prefers to spend the warm season on the sheltered balcony. Here he creates a relaxing holiday feeling with his palm-like silhouette. You should pay attention to the degree of humidity, as dry air causes unsightly brown tips. So fill the mat with pebbles and water so that your Dragon Draped Tree is enveloped in vaporized moisture.
Tip: A Dracaena marginata always stretches in the direction of the light. So that he does not grow in the long term uneven or Geiltriebe developed, he is a little rotated every 14 days.


Dracaena marginata

The tropical plant not only looks like a palm tree, it also thrives perfectly in palm soil. You do not have to worry about the subject substrate, because commercial potting soil on compost basis also meets all the important requirements. The permeability can be improved by the addition of perlite, sand, seramis or pumice. Add extra stability to the houseplant by using a mixture of clay soil, compost, peat and inorganic aggregates for a loose texture.

Pouring and fertilizing

The water requirement of a Dracaena marginata is at a medium level. He does not want to deal with wet feet any more than he does with perfect dryness of the ball. The casting according to the dipping method has proven itself:
  • Dip the root ball in water until saturated
  • then drain the water well
  • Do not perform the next dive until the substrate has dried well
  • Fertilize every 14 days from March to September
In the dragon tree is an enormous growth force, which is further driven by fertilizer. If you want a less rapid growth, reduce the nutrient supply to a monthly dose.
Tip: Like all tropical plants, the Gerandete Drachenbaum prefers room-warm, lime-free water. Where there is no possibility of collecting rainwater, decalcified tap water serves as an alternative.

To cut

The motives for cutting a Dracaena marginata may be manifold. The procedure always follows the same sequence and is not a problem even for the inexperienced hand:
  • cut off an unsightly leaf about 2 cm below its crown
  • seal the cut with tree or candle wax
  • apply a little fertilizer after pruning

dragon tree

Within the following weeks, the plant expels from several sleeping eyes at this point. Each pruning thus also promotes a denser branching and controls the height growth.


During the entire growing season, the propagation of a Dracaena marginata is possible. Very simple is the use of head cuttings. Specifically, this means the small trunk branches with one of the pretty leaf creatures. As part of the pruning you will receive several copies of it, which in this case should be at least 10-15 cm in length. Proceed as follows:
  • fill a pot with a lean substrate, such as peat sand, Pikiererde or TKS1 (peat culture substrate)
  • Shorten the leaves to 1 cm in length
  • put the shoot at least halfway into the ground
  • Moisten substrate and cuttings with lukewarm rainwater
In order to activate the rooting, temperatures of 28-30° C are required. You can achieve this in a heated room greenhouse, which is placed on the partially shaded windowsill. Alternatively, put a plastic bag over the potting pot to create a moist, warm microclimate. Where the required degree of heat is not reached, the rooting takes a long time or does not take place at all.
The seeds can be sown throughout the year. Since a gerendeter dragon tree in the local latitudes only rarely flowers and fructifies, the seed is acquired in the specialized trade for exotic plants. It is advisable to prepare the semen in preparation for its germination by soaking overnight in water at room temperature.
  • Sowing pots fill with Saaterde or coconut fibers
  • Insert the soaked seeds approx. 1 cm deep and sift with sand
  • Moisten with water from the spray bottle or water from below
  • in the mini greenhouse in half shady location
  • optionally cover the pots with glass or foil
At a constant temperature of around 25° C, germination takes about one month. During this time, make sure that the substrate does not dry. Show the seed leaves, the cover is ventilated regularly until it can be completely dispensed with. Seedlings with more than 3 pairs of leaves are placed pikiert in single pots and a little lighter.

What to do with leaf loss?

Dragon Tree - Dracaena deremensis

If the Dracaena marginata is not feeling well, he signals his displeasure by dropping the leaves. The following actions can solve the problem:
  • Change location: If the lighting conditions at the location prove to be too dark or too bright, the dragon tree settles better. The same applies to cool temperatures below 15° C. A place next to an active radiator you should not expect your dragon tree also.

  • Increase humidity: Dry air is one of the most common triggers for leaf throwing. Remedy is provided by commercially available humidifiers. Decorative succeeds with a nice room well. If you take the time to spray the elegant leaves repeatedly with lime-free water, the problem soon becomes a thing of the past.

  • insulating underlay: If a room is not equipped with underfloor heating, the cold quickly gets into the root ball from below. Especially during the winter, the cause for falling leaves is here to search. Place the Dracaena marginata on a coconut mat, a wooden block without a similar insulating material.

ConclusionAn easy-care indoor plant, which creates a natural feel-good atmosphere all year round, is behind the name Dracaena marginata. With a palm-like habit and lanceolate, red-edged leaves, the dragon tree is truly not to be missed. Their steep career to become one of the most popular indoor plants, owes the tropical plants ultimately uncomplicated care, easy cutting and undramatic propagation.

Worth knowing about Dracaena marginata soon

  • The Dracaena marginata comes from Madagascar. Her growth is slim, with lancet-shaped leaves.
  • With good care, the dragon tree can become quite tall. Dragon trees are often sold with twisted, thin trunks.
  • Undoubtedly, the Dracaena marginata is one of the most popular and most easy to maintain houseplants.
Commercially, the plants are available with different leaf colorations: The variety Care has monochrome leaves, the variety Bicolor has reddish brown colorations on the edges. The variety Tricolor, on the other hand, has three-colored leaves, although this variety is the least resistant and therefore also more intensive care.
  • The dragon tree loves warmth, so it is the ideal planting for a warm greenhouse, or a heated conservatory.
  • A very bright location is ideal, but it is very sensitive to the blazing sun.
  • Dracaena marginata prefers temperatures of 20-23° C in summer and in winter the temperature must not be lower than 16° C.
  • Only the green variety tolerates shadows. High humidity is especially appreciated in winter to make up for the dry heating air.
  • The substrate should only be kept moderately moist. Waterlogging is generally poorly tolerated.
  • If excess water collects in the saucer or in the planter, it should be poured away quickly.
  • The nutrient requirement is within the normal range. In the growth phase, the plant is fertilized with green plant fertilizer every 14 days.
  • For propagation are suitable trunk cuttings, but also head cuttings.
  • Spring is the perfect time for repotting. For this purpose uses a humus and loose soil mixture.
  • If the air is too dry and too much heat at the same time, the plant may show infestations of scale insects.

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