Are you a proud owner of a bird of paradise? Bird of paradise plants, coming from the Strelitzia family, are beautiful plants. Well-known for their bright, vibrant orange leaves and mimicry of their tropical bird namesake, these are unique additions to your home, inside and out!
The bird of paradise, or crane flower, can be grown in all climates, which is exciting for those who don’t live in tropical climates. Bring some paradise into your home with this gorgeous plant. You’ll add color to your patio in the summer and dreams of warmth and sun to your home in the winter.
While the bird of paradise is a breathtaking plant, it does require some tenderness, love, and care to maintain its beauty.
General Notes on Bird of Paradise
Bird of paradise is not only known for its likeness to tropical birds but also because of its great growing ability. When grown with appropriate care, bird of paradise plants can grow up to 5-6 feet tall. These plants come in two different colors, most plants produce orange flowers, but there is also a rarer white bird of paradise.
They require a heavy supply of sunshine and will need the light somewhat diluted to prevent the burning of their leaves in their early years. With proper care, these plants can last a long time.
Regular watering is crucial, and a steady fertilizing schedule during the growing season is also vital. And, though it may be obvious, bird of paradise plants should be potted in a container that allows them to get moved between the indoors and outdoors during the transition of seasons.
Composting is also a great way to give the bird of paradise an extra edge of nutrients- this should happen in the early spring, before the growing season.
While these are all needed to help them grow, it’s essential to help keep the growth of the bird of paradise in check. That is when pruning comes in!
Prune Bird of Paradise
Pruning is a process that helps eliminate dying leaves on your bird of paradise to make room for new growth. Anything dead, dying, or material not looking as it should is fair game to be removed for the benefit of your bird of paradise.
Pruning is usually performed on an older plant to make it smaller. Pruning differs from trimming or thinning, which are other actions that help clean the bird of paradise plant up.
While trimming should be done periodically during the growing season (and should be to replace dying flowers), it is impertinent to do pruning just before the beginning of the new growing season. Spring cleaning, but for your bird of paradise!
These flowers will bloom and be vibrant for approximately three weeks, after which they will die. Good upkeep on your plant is essential to help it maintain healthy growth, so removing those dead petals and other dying parts will keep everything healthy.
Thinning out excess branches or flowers is also paramount for maintaining your bird of paradise’s health. Doing so creates more openings for sunlight which rejuvenates the plant! The extra light exposure also reduces fungal disease, which thrives in darkness.
When pruning, it’s paramount to make sure you are careful. Avoid hedge trimmers and choose gentler tools; hedge trimmers will create rips that not only look bad but can harm the plant. Gentleness while cutting will prevent damage to the roots as well.
Proper sanitization of your tools and wearing gloves will ensure you don’t transfer any potential diseases to the plant.
When finished pruning your bird of paradise, all leaves and stems should be just above the ground, which signals that your plant is ready for the next growing season. Make it a habit to remove dead material from the soil.
Bird of paradise plants are beautiful, but that beauty thrives on proper upkeep and care. To prune bird of paradise keeps the plant looking its best and helps to keep it healthy.
Pruning removes dead, damaged, or sick material and creates more space for sunshine and water. Refreshed plants have better growth rates. When you prune bird of paradise once a year, your plant will thrive all year round.