Dracaena Draco, popularly known as the Dragon tree is a rare species to find and is not a common house plant. This plant belongs to the Agave family. As the name suggests it is a tree, so like every other tree out there its growth process is quite slow. It starts out with a single stem which takes 10 to 15 years to stop growing and make the first flower, so patience is the key here. It will reach around 4 feet in height after a period of 10 years or so. It is native to the Canary Islands, Madeira Cape Verde, and sometimes found locally in western Morocco too. Due to this, it has the ability to survive droughts for quite a long time.
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Let’s discuss some features of Dracaena Draco.
During its initial years of growth, Dracaena Draco branches a lot. Each branch of it can grow until 10-14 years before it stops. Once the stems reach a decent height then you will find that the crown has started to grow on the top. The circumference of the tree may be around 40 feet. The shape of a grown Draco is like an umbrella. On top of the branches, you will find that the tree has a canopy of blue and green leaves.
In the beginning, it may seem to you like any other flowering plant but as some time passes by you will find it taking a shape like a palm tree. The leaves are thin and sharp, so it is better to keep them out of reach of children or pets otherwise they may get seriously hurt. It has got the feature to store water as it matures, so it can survive for quite a long time without water. If you cut its stem you may find some red fluid flowing out of it, which is referred to as dragon blood by people. You must try to protect the plants from cuts because it leaves scars on its trunk.
Flowers & Fragrances
As we told you before that it takes the Draco tree around 10 years to stop the stem growth and begin the flower growth. The white color of lily-like flowers is quite beautiful. During the ripe season, you start getting those red berries. The flower has a smooth fragrance.
Sunlight & Temperature
The Draco tree can survive harsh temperatures as low as 40 degrees Fahrenheit. It is recommended to provide enough sunlight to the tree throughout the year for better growth. You should keep in mind this point while planting this one, whether indoor or outdoors, the more sunlight it receives the more beautiful its leaves will be. Let me tell you a secret for a great canopy on the top, you should keep rotating the pot in the direction of sunlight as it grows towards the light, thus ensuring a full circle on top.
Soil & Plantation
You should know that these grow into a big tree, so you should plant them in a big pot. Their growing branch system will not be disturbed when you use a big pot. Cactus soil is the best option for planting the Draco plant. It may be the case that after a few years you need to repot them into much bigger pots or after a decade or so, you have to find a place in the ground. Believe me, repotting will not be easy then.
Water & Nutrients
Although we mentioned above that it is a drought tree and it can survive without water for a long time but it doesn’t mean that you don’t need to water them. You should water them regularly for better growth and good flower fragrance. In winters, you may water them a bit less frequently.
You should provide nutrients at least once a month.
Maintenance & Grooming
You should cut off the withered leaves on a regular basis as it will help you to show off the trunk a bit more. This plant is very easy to maintain thus you wouldn’t need to put on many efforts.
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There are many ways to Propagate Dracaena Draco, let’s discuss them.
How to Sprout Dracaena Draco Seeds
Begin with Scarifying the Seed
Our Draco seeds have a quite hard outer coating that why they require some scarification to germinate. Scarification is the process of breaking the coat to permit moisture to reach the embryo within the seed. There are a number of ways in which scarification is achieved in nature like transmission through avian digestive tracts and sometimes freezing temperatures. If you want to it manually then use a scalpel or nail clippers. Remember to chip away only a small portion of an outer coating, enough that moisture can reach the seed. Cutting down too deep maybe harmful sometimes. Once it is done, proceed to the next step.
Planting the Seed
It is very important to choose the planting medium carefully as it provides the moisture that the seed’s embryo requires to germinate. For the Draco plant, we will recommend you to choose some mediums like sand or peat moss, as they are soilless, and you need to moisten them regularly. Once the soil gets dry or even a bit moist, carefully plant the seed in the top layer of the medium. It helps it to germinate fast. Make sure that the seed gets a good amount of light as it needs it to germinate fast and well. You can buy a water spray to moist them regularly.
Protection during Germination
This is the time when you need to show patience, it may take eight weeks or even more for the seed to germinate into a sprout. Once it shows a sign of germination, you need to take care of it as it is quite delicate right now and can easily get destroyed. Provide the seed with a lot of direct sunlight and water it on the regular basis. Although we believe that the Draco plant is slow-growing but around the spring season it will grow enough to be able to plant outdoors. If you are in the mood to grow it indoors then you would need a quite large pot and maintain a room temperature of around 70 Fahrenheit and it should get plenty of sunlight.
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How to grow Draco Tree from Stem
Each part of the stem of the Draco Tree is capable of developing roots from its base, and new shoots start growing from the top. Let’s discuss the process of growing the Draco tree from the stem cutting method.
Step 1: As you guessed you would need a Draco tree and start with cutting small stems approx 40cm each, also don’t forget which is the base and which one is the top.
Step 2: Now fill a jar with water and keep the stem cuttings in it. Carefully keep it in a good position. Keep on adding water regularly.
Step 3: After a few weeks you may notice some white nodules have germinated at the base of the stem. These nodules will grow into big roots later.
Step 4: Similarly on the top, you will some swelling. It will look like it’s trying to emerge out of the stem.
Step 5: Wait for the stems to grow some leaves and turn into a bushy new plant.
Step 6: Once you are confident enough that the stems have well enough roots and it is looking good from the top too, then it’s time to shift them to a new pot. At first, you should take a small pot and plant these stems carefully.
Step 7: Now you just need to take care of the plant and keep on shifting it to larger pots as it grows in size.
You can use any of the above methods to grow the Draco plant. These are beautiful plants, although they are well suited for parks and grounds, you can have them in your backyard too.