Care of Plumeria


Plumeria is a member of the Apocynaceae family and also is known as frangipani or temple tree. It is grown as an ornamental, highly valued for the fragrant flowers that cover the tree beginning in the spring and continuing through the summer. Plumeria grows well in tropical and subtropical areas, needing minimal care. In areas prone to frost, it makes a good container plant, growing quite large. In the landscape, trees can reach heights and widths of up to 30 feet when mature.

Step 1

Water the plumeria once a week during dry weather, soaking the ground to a depth of 2 inches.

Step 2

Fertilize plumeria every three to four months with approximately 1 pound of 10-30-10 fertilizer per inch of trunk diameter. Broadcast the fertilizer around the base of the tree and 2 feet beyond the canopy.

Step 3

Avoid hitting the tree with the lawnmower or other equipment. Plumeria branches are soft with a thin bark that is easily broken or damaged.

Step 4

Prune plumeria during the winter months, after the leaves drop. Cut away shriveled, bent and damaged branches with clean, sharp pruning shears. Prune to a canopy shape.

Step 5

Cover the plumeria with old blankets or canvas when frost is expected.

Step 6

Pick the flowers carefully to avoid damaging the plant. Hold the flower gently at the base and give it a tug to remove individual flowers.

Tips and Warnings

  • Plumeria produces a white sap that is an eye and skin irritant.

Things You'll Need

  • General fertilizer
  • Super bloom fertilizer
  • Pruning shears or small hand saw
  • Blankets or canvas (optional)


  • University of Hawaii Cooperative Extension: Plumeria
  • University of Florida IFAS Extension: Frangipani for a Tropical Look
Keywords: care of plumeria, fertilizer for plumeria, growing plumeria

About this Author

Diane Watkins has been writing since 1984, with experience in newspaper, newsletter and web content. She writes two electronic newsletters and content around the web. Watkins has a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from Clemson University. She has taken graduate courses in biochemistry and education.