Oleander Plant – The Toxic Desert Shrub

Oleanders, which are native to the Mediterranean and Asian regions, are evergreen plants that produce beautiful blossoms. These plants are quite easy to grow and they are seen to survive well in warm climatic conditions.

Oleander Plant – Quite Easy to Maintain

The oleander plants are not tolerant to cold weather and they grow well in full sunlight and in a well drained soil. People who live in regions having cold weather conditions should grow oleanders either in a green house, or else should propagate them as indoor plants. Even though the plant is drought resistant, it is advised that you water them on a daily basis, during the conditions of insufficient rainfall. Fertilization should be done once in early spring and then again during early fall, with an organic fertilizer. In order to keep the plants in shape and to encourage healthy blooming, it is recommended that you prune them once in a while. The oleander plants bear clusters of flowers in salmon, pink and white colors, during the period from May to October. These flowers are funnel shaped and have an extremely pleasant fragrance. Due to the poisonous nature of the plant, it is advised that one should take extreme care while handling them.

Oleander Tree – Needs Proper Pruning

It is seen that when pruned properly, oleanders can grow up to a height of 12 feet. A row of beautifully pruned oleander trees will not only beautify your garden, but will also serve as tall privacy screens. In order to propagate oleanders as trees, one should continuously keep on removing the lower branches of the plant as they grow. Leaving behind the hardiest and straightest branch, prune off all the other branches at the top of the plant. This will enable you to propagate an oleander tree with a single trunk. The branch which is left behind should be at least 2 inches thick and should have a heavily branched crown with rich foliage. This single branch is to be planted firmly by providing adequate support and one should trim off the side sprouts from this trunk, as soon as they are formed.

Oleander Bush – Globular Shaped

If you wish to propagate oleanders in the form of bushes, then following some guidelines becomes necessary. The planting of the shrubs should be done in spring or fall, and each plant should be placed at a distance of 6 to 12 feet from each other. To encourage a bushier growth, the oleanders are to be pruned after the main bloom period. For a healthy branching, the plant should be cut back just above the leaf nodes. The top of the stems should also be trimmed occasionally so as to maintain the bush like appearance. The oleander bushes have a natural globular shape and they serve as excellent evergreen hedges. For a healthy plant growth and a better appearance, it is recommended to keep the bushes trimmed at a height of 6 feet.

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