How to Grow and Care for Dracaena deremensis Indoors


Dracaena deremensis

Photo Credit: Toronto Bulk Flowers

Botanical name: Dracaena deremensis
Family: Asparagaceae
Subfamily: Nolinoideae

Description

Dracaena deremensis is a slow growing plant whose foliage is dark-green with one or more longitudinal stripes in a different color.

As it grows, it sheds the lower leaves, leaving a bare stem with a cluster of leaves at the top. A new plant may drop a few leaves as it adjusts to its new home.

Dracaena deremensis is ideal as a stand alone plant or as part of a mixed group, with the various leaf patterns complementing and overlapping one another.

Size

The Dracaena deremensis plant can reach a height of 4 ft or more when mature. The leaves are about 1.5 ft long and may die if exposed to excessive sunlight.

Air Cleaning

According to the NASA Clean Air Study, Dracaena deremensis Janet Craig and Dracaena deremensis warneckii were found to remove common VOCs like xylene, toulene, benzene, formaldehyde and trichloethylene.

Varieties

The common varieties of Dracaena deremensis are Dracaena deremensis Janet Craig which is all green. Dracaena deremenis warneckii which bears white stripes close to the edge.

Dracaena deremensis has two broad white bands at the center. Dracaena deremensis Lemon Suprise has yellow edges. Dracaena deremensis Janet Craig Compacta has much smaller leaves about 8 in. long and is ideal for small spaces among many others.

Where to Buy

Beautiful Dracaena deremensis are available online in various sizes at Etsy. Buy magnificent Dracaena Plants from Etsy.

Dracaena deremensis

Photo Credit: PlantVine

Dracaena deremensis Care Indoors

Dracaena deremensis thrives in bright, indirect light away from direct sunlight, warmth and consistently moist, rich, well-drained soil coupled with monthly feeding.

It has no need for high humidity but does well in average room humidity. Repotting is only necessary when the roots begin to grow through the drainage holes. Frequent pruning is necessary to keep the plant neat as well as rejuvenate growth. Keep reading for more on these growing conditions and how to achieve them.

Light Requirements

Dracaena deremensis grows best in bright, indirect light; an east- or west-facing window is ideal. It can also grow in shade but the the leaves will be much narrower. It can also grow under a grow light where natural light is not adequate.

Avoid direct sunlight as it can lead to sunburn brown spots on the leaves. Regularly rotate the pot to ensure that the plant receives light on all sides for even growth. Check out this guide on understanding light for houseplants.

Watering

Water Dracaena deremensis thoroughly during the growing season while allowing the top 1-2 in. of soil to dry out between waterings to keep the soil moist. Reduce watering in the cold season as growth is minimal to keep the soil slightly moist.

Avoid soggy soil as it can lead to root-rot disease. Ensure the pot has a drainage hole and the soil if free-draining to prevent the soil from getting soggy.

Use water that is at room temperature and free of chlorine, flourides and other chemicals to prevent brown leaf tips. Read more on how to water houseplants.


Temperature

Dracaena deremensis requires an average warmth with a minumum of 150C inorder to thrive. Read more on understanding temperature for houseplants.

Humidity

Dracaena deremensis has no need for high humidity. Average room humidity is ideal for this plant.

However, if the air is too dry especially where temperature is high, raise humidity by setting the pot on a wet pebble tray or use a cool mist humidifier. Read more on how to raise humidity for houseplants.

Clean the leaves by damp-wiping with a soft cloth to get rid of dust and also discourage pest infestations. Read more on how to clean houseplants.

Fertilizer (Feeding)

Feed Dracaena deremensis monthly during the growing period with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer. Do not feed during the cold season as growth is minimal and feeding at this time can lead to fertilizer burn.

Regularly flush out accumulated salts from the soil by running a stream of water through the soil until the water comes out through the drainage hole. Allow it to run for a few minutes and repeat several times. Read more on how to feed houseplants.

Repotting

Repot Dracaena deremensis at the beginning of the growing season when roots begin to grow through the drainage holes as the plant prefers to be slightly root-bound.

Use a pot 1 size larger and one that has a drainage hole to prevent the soil from getting soggy as it can lead to root-rot disease. Never allow the roots to sit in soggy soil as it can lead to root-rot.

Soil

The best soil for Dracaena deremensis should be rich in organic matter and free-draining to prevent it from getting soggy while providing the required nutrients. Most multi-purpose potting mixes are ideal. Purchase quality Potting Mix for Dracaena deremensis from Etsy.

Pruning

Pruning Dracaena deremensis involves removal of dead and yellow leaves to maintain the plant neat and tidy.

Prune thin or bare stemmed plants during the growing season by cutting off the top crown of leaves along the stem. New leaves will sprout just below the cut.

The crown of leaves can be used to propagate a new plant. Read more on how to prune houseplants.

Propagation

Dracaena deremensis can be propagated in three ways; by air layering, from stem cuttings or by use of the crown from old leggy canes.

How to Propagate Dracaena deremensis by Air layering

Make a notch on the stem of a healthy Dracaena deremensis plant and coat the notch with a rooting hormone.

Surround the notched area with damp moss and then cover it with a polythene film or clear plastic wrap.

Maintain the area moist and allow some time for roots to develop in the notched area.

After the roots have formed sever the stem just below the covered part, remove the polythene and carefully pot the rooted cutting.

New shoots will sprout from the shortened stem of the old Dracaena deremensis plant.

How to propagate Dracaena deremensis from the top crown of leaves

Remove the top crown of leaves from Dracaena deremensis plant bearing about 3 in. of stem. Apply a rooting hormone on the lower cut end of the stem.

Insert the crown of leaves in moist, free-draining rooting soil.

Place the set in a warm, brightly-lit spot and maintain the rooting soil moist until rooting occurs. Rooting will occur in about 3-6 weeks.

When you observe new growth, the new Dracaena deremensis plant can be transplanted to its own pot.

How to propagate Dracaena deremensis from stem cuttings

Take 2-3 in. long stem cuttings from a Dracaena deremensis plant. Ensure each cutting has some leaf nodes as this is where new growth will come from.

Dip the lower cut-end of the cuttings in a rooting hormone.

Fill a rooting container with free-draining rooting soil. Lightly moisten the rooting mix.

With a pencil or similar object, make a hole in the moist rooting mix. The hole should be slightly wider than the diameter of the cutting.

Insert the cutting in the previously made hole in the moist rooting mix.

Cover the container with clear polythene sheet. Place the set up in a warm shaded place.

Maintain the soil moist through out until the new Dracaena deremensis plants are well established after which routine care can begin.

Dracaena deremensis

Dracaena deremensis Problems Indoors

Dracaena deremensis problems indoors are due to cultural faults (improper care). They include brown leaf tips, yellowing, leaf spots, plant death, pests and diseases among others. Continue reading for more on these problems, their remedies and solutions.

Brown leaf tips and yellow edges

There are four possible reasons for brown leaf tips and yellow edges in Dracaena deremensis. One possible reason is dry air.

Set the pot on a wet pebble tray or use a cool mist humidifier to raise humidity. Read more on how to raise humidity for houseplants.

The second possible reason for brown leaf tips and yellow edges in Dracaena deremensis is underwatering. Maintain the soil moist at all times and do not allow the soil to dry out completely.

The third possible reason for brown leaf tips and yellow edges in Dracaena deremensis is chemical accumulation in the soil. Use only chemical free water and regularly flush out salts from the soil.

The fourth possible reason for brown leaf tips and yellow edges in Dracaena deremensis is cold draughts. Protect the plant from cold draughts or place it away from cold draughts to maintain an average room temperature.

Plant death

Dracaena deremensis is prone to root-rot disease which is promoted by soggy soil. If the soil remains soggy for too long, the plant will die.

Ensure the pot has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining to avoid soggy soil. Reduce watering during the cold season to maintain the soil slightly moist as growth is minimal at this time.

Another possible cause of the death of Dracaena deremensis is keeping it too cold. Maintain an average room temperature and protect it from cold draughts.

Dracaena deremensis could also be dying from accumulation of salts in the soil. Regularly flush out accumulated salts in the soil by running a stream of water through the soil until the water comes out through the drainage hole. Allow it to run for a few minutes and repeat several times.

Yellowing lower leaves

Yellowing lower leaves is a natural process in Dracaena deremensis. As the plant matures it sheds the lower leaves. Each lower leaf turns yellow and dries leaving a crown of leaves on top of the cane-like stem.

Leaves soft, curled with brown edges

If the temperature is too low Dracaena deremensis leaves become soft and curled and the edges turn brown. Maintain an average room temperature and protect the plant from cold draughts.

Brown leaf spots

Dracaena deremensis will form brown leaf spots if it is underwatered. Maintain the soil moist at all times and never allow the soil ball to dry out completely.

Bleached dry leaf patches

Direct sunlight will cause bleached dry patches on the leaves of Dracaena deremensis. Move the plant to a shadier spot or protect it from direct sunlight.

Pests

The common pests in Dracaena deremensis are Mealy Bugs, Scale Insects and Spider Mites Isolate the affected plant to prevent spread to other plants and treat it appropriately for these pests.

Is Dracaena deremensis toxic?

Dracaena deremensis is toxic to both humans and pets as indicated by ASPCA. The leaves contain alkyds which if ingested they may cause vomiting and excessive salivation.

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