There are more than 40 species of dracaena and you can easily trim them all with cutting shears. While these plants don't require pruning, pruning is fun and allows the plant to be shaped the way you want it. If you want, you can trim the leaves and stems to make the dracaena shorter and thicker. To do this, prune at the beginning and end of the rainy season, and always use clean, sharp shears.
Part 1 of 3: Pruning Strategically
Step 1. Prune the plant at the beginning of the rainy season before entering the growing season
The dracaena plant will enter a period of active growth and prepare for the flowering season. Pruning the plant before it grows will keep it healthy. Pruning will also make it easier for you to shape the plant to have an ideal appearance.
While you can prune dracaena at any time, pruning at this time will stimulate the growth of new, healthy shoots
Step 2. Prune again at the end of the rainy season after the growing period is over
Cut the leaves and/or stems again after the growing season is over. In the dry season, plant growth will not be too rapid. To help the plant conserve energy, remove any long leaves or stems before the dry season arrives.
In this way, plants can conserve nutrients and stay healthy throughout the hot, dry season
Step 3. Use a clean, sharp knife or shears when pruning dracaena
Always use a sharp knife or shears when pruning plants. Blunt blades will injure the plant and make wound healing difficult. Before pruning, wipe the shears with spirits or an all-purpose disinfectant. Dirty blades can spread infection and disease.
- The disinfection process will keep the plant healthy after pruning.
- Alternatively, you can use pruning shears.
Part 2 of 3: Pruning Dracaena Leaves
Step 1. Peel off the brown or yellow part of the leaf by hand
If you see any diseased leaves, remove them by hand. Tear off the leaf where it starts to change color so that only the green area remains. Observe the entire plant and remove any discolored parts.
- Use cuttings instead of your hands, if that's easier for you.
- This cleaning will keep the plant looking beautiful while reducing the risk of disease.
Step 2. Cut the leaves in the same way if you want all the plants to look uniform
If you want the leaves to look stylish and symmetrical, cut them at an angle. Follow the other uncut leaf shapes to make them look realistic.
This way, you won't even notice that the leaves are trimmed
Step 3. Cut off any damaged leaves growing from the base of the stem
This stem refers to the woody stem of the plant. Use your hands to separate the leaves from the stems and take the pruning shears to cut off the dead leaves. Do this for any brown or wilted leaves.
Cut the leaves as close to their base as possible on the stem of the plant
Part 3 of 3: Cutting Dracaena Stems
Step 1. Cut off any branches of dracaena that are growing out of shape or prune them off to stimulate the growth of new shoots
Often, dracaena species have one main trunk and several additional branches. If any of these branches grow sideways and look unattractive, cut them off with shears. You can cut it at the base to remove the entire branch or cut it at a certain height. Later, this branch will grow new shoots at that height.
This step is optional, but will make the plant look neat and lush
Step 2. Cut the top of the main stem to get a lush and bushy shape
If you want your dracaena plant to stay small and round, just take a pair of shears to trim the top of the stem. Cut the plant to the desired height, but make sure it is about to of the total stem height.
This cutting will stimulate the growth of new branches near the top of the newly pruned trunk
Step 3. Don't cut the stems of the dracaena if you want a full, wild look
Remember, pruning dracaena is not a must. If you want the plant to look lush and bushy, let the dracaena grow all season and prune it the following year if you like. Let the dracaena stems continue to grow and see where it leads. You can adjust the growth.
However, once the plant reaches the ceiling, you may at least want to trim the leaves
Step 4. Make cuts at a 45° angle to keep the plant healthy
Examine the branches of the dracaena to see which direction it is growing, then tilt the cutting shears about 45° at the stem. Press the scissors firmly to get a clean cut.
- A clean cut will reduce the risk of infection and allow the plant to heal faster.
- If you want to replant a freshly cut stem, cut back the dracaena stem that was previously 45° angled.
Step 5. Cut the dracaena to the desired height
Pruning this dracaena is tailored to personal taste. You can cut the entire branch if you want to reduce the number, or cut it in half if you want the top of the plant to be thicker.