Dracaena marginata, more commonly known as the dragon tree draws its origin from the Madagascar and the Mauritius. These attractive plants have stiff, sword-like leaves whose edges are usually red. The grey stem is shiny, narrow and slender. This plant is perfect for beginners since it is very easy to care for. The outdoor varieties can develop tiny and fragrant white flowers during the spring season, followed by circular yellowish orange berries. When grown as an indoor plant, flowers and berries rarely appear. This small tree can grow upto 20 feet in height but in indoor conditions, it is usually pruned and a height of 6 feet is maintained. These make excellent houseplants since they tolerate extreme conditions with their aggressive root system and add on to your aesthetic.
Common name: Dragon tree
Scientific name: Dracaena marginata
Size: 15 to 20 feet, usually kept pruned to under 6feet, spread of 3 to 10 feet
Maintenance: Easy to care
Toxicity: Toxic to animals, non-toxic to humans
Where to keep the plant: Inside the living room near a window or in the balcony in indirect sunlight.
Once a week. Since it is very easy to over water this plant, make sure you do not drown it and wait until the top half of the soil is dry before watering. In low light conditions, this may take upto three weeks.
Bright light. Dragon trees grow best in bright light but they can also survive in dim conditions. Plants kept in low light conditions usually take longer to grow and bear smaller leaves with less intense colour. Do not place your dragon tree in full sun since it can burn the foliage.
Loamy, well-draining. When growing as a potted plant use a loose and well draining potting mix- loamy soil amended with peat moss is recommended. Make sure the pot you choose to grow the tree in has sufficient space for an extensive root system.
Regular household humidity. They prefer temperatures between 70-80F. Regular household humidity does fine for them. If your house has dry conditions, consider light misting of their leaves regularly with a spray bottle.
Low need. Dragon trees have a relatively low need of fertilizers. Feed them lightly at the beginning of spring or twice a year with a controlled-release fertilizer. There is no need to fertilize them in the winter.
Cutting. Dracaena marginata roots easily from their stem cuttings. When the cutting is placed in a water medium, the roots start to emerge within a span of 3 weeks, without having to use a rooting hormone. The process of propagation is so easy that nurseries and gardeners readily propagate them.