How to Prune this Umbrella Tree

CookEMann

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I got this Umbrella Tree free on craigslist. It is/was very tall and a lot of the branches were damaged, so I cut them back to what you see now. I would like to cut the last three branches to a similar length, but I'm worried new leaf growth won't return since I would be cutting off the last of the green branches and leaves, and all that would be left is the thick grey bark branches. Would new foliage grow back after this aggressive pruning? I am new to pruning. Thanks.

IMG_20191130_122923.jpg
 

flowerbug

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hmm, i usually kept mine pruned back to make it bushy.

all pieces of stem that have nodes of what you cut back can be used to try to start new plants, rooting hormone and warmth on the bottom and a clear dome to keep the moisture in will help with success.

poke the chunks of stem into some moist potting mix after using a bit of rooting hormone (this isn't a requirement but may help increase how many take). watch for signs of new growth before giving the new plant any normal care.

once in a while i took the houseplants and gave them a shower to get the dust off and it was also a good time to leach the salts out of the pots if they were getting too crusty (and replace the top few inches of potting soil).

i don't recall these plants being heavy feeders and they were ok with being somewhat dry before watering again.

this is all i can remember. :)

as for this particular plant, take one branch down as far as you want, cut it into chunks of about 6 inches, poke them in dirt and keep it moist (not soggy). once you see new growth you know you have new plants so then you can chop whatever you want of the remaining stems back to whatever length you like.

they should start regrowing from the next node or two down from your cut so it helps to not make your cut more than a half inch or so above a node. this regrowth will likely start before you notice the chunks rooting...
 

CookEMann

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Are nodes only located on the green green branches? Or do you think I will get regrowth on those cut branches I made.
 

flowerbug

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Are nodes only located on the green green branches? Or do you think I will get regrowth on those cut branches I made.
i think there are leaf nodes all the way down to the roots. most tropical plants of this type are set up similarly in that they have leaves that grow at the ends and then drop off and are replaced as the plant grows towards the light.

but like i said i'd only do it one branch at first if you're not familiar with houseplants and rooting things and such. this way you leave the rest of the plant growing for insurance and as you become more comfortable with the process you'll be more comfortable doing things like this.
 

YourRabbitGirl

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Use pruning shears to trim the stem right above a growth node where a leaf has sprouted. Then, to reduce the width of the plant, cut back the horizontal branches just above a growth node so that new growth will be fuller and healthier.
 

YourRabbitGirl

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hmm, i usually kept mine pruned back to make it bushy.

all pieces of stem that have nodes of what you cut back can be used to try to start new plants, rooting hormone and warmth on the bottom and a clear dome to keep the moisture in will help with success.

poke the chunks of stem into some moist potting mix after using a bit of rooting hormone (this isn't a requirement but may help increase how many take). watch for signs of new growth before giving the new plant any normal care.

once in a while i took the houseplants and gave them a shower to get the dust off and it was also a good time to leach the salts out of the pots if they were getting too crusty (and replace the top few inches of potting soil).

i don't recall these plants being heavy feeders and they were ok with being somewhat dry before watering again.

this is all i can remember. :)

as for this particular plant, take one branch down as far as you want, cut it into chunks of about 6 inches, poke them in dirt and keep it moist (not soggy). once you see new growth you know you have new plants so then you can chop whatever you want of the remaining stems back to whatever length you like.

they should start regrowing from the next node or two down from your cut so it helps to not make your cut more than a half inch or so above a node. this regrowth will likely start before you notice the chunks rooting...
I'm so afraid of trimming them, I might do something wrong.. hahaha I really hope there is like an Instruction manual for these tasks. hahaha
 

flowerbug

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there are in many houseplant and gardening references about how to prune and propagate different kinds of plants. as a kid i had a rather large book from Reader's Digest about how to grow about anything and i spent a great deal of time reading through it and trying everything i could. i may still have that book... *goes and looks* yes, i do still have it.

more recently i picked up a book titled _10,000 Garden Questions: Answered by 20 Experts_ from the discard stacks at the library book sale. a lot of information in it i consider dated or not what i'd do (i don't use bug sprays or commercial fertilizers), but a lot of other information in it is interesting to ponder on a mid-winter day... now so much is available on-line and more geared towards what i am interested in that printed references are not my first choice for quick answers. on-line searches will usually give more appropriate answers.
 
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catjac1975

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I got this Umbrella Tree free on craigslist. It is/was very tall and a lot of the branches were damaged, so I cut them back to what you see now. I would like to cut the last three branches to a similar length, but I'm worried new leaf growth won't return since I would be cutting off the last of the green branches and leaves, and all that would be left is the thick grey bark branches. Would new foliage grow back after this aggressive pruning? I am new to pruning. Thanks.

View attachment 33767
I would not cut off the rest of the green until you have some green from the already cut branches.Some plants will regrow green quickly. I am not familiar with that plant. so give the other branches time to prove themselves.Have you repotted? Fertilized?
 

YourRabbitGirl

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there are in many houseplant and gardening references about how to prune and propagate different kinds of plants. as a kid i had a rather large book from Reader's Digest about how to grow about anything and i spent a great deal of time reading through it and trying everything i could. i may still have that book... *goes and looks* yes, i do still have it.

more recently i picked up a book titled _10,000 Garden Questions: Answered by 20 Experts_ from the discard stacks at the library book sale. a lot of information in it i consider dated or not what i'd do (i don't use bug sprays or commercial fertilizers), but a lot of other information in it is interesting to ponder on a mid-winter day... now so much is available on-line and more geared towards what i am interested in that printed references are not my first choice for quick answers. on-line searches will usually give more appropriate answers.
I had the same book. I haven't finished it yet. a friends friend borrowed it, but its already 2 months and he hadn't returned it yet.. is the book that informative that someone already decided to keep it?
 

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