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How to Winterize Plumeria

By M.H. Dyer ; Updated September 21, 2017

Plumerias are deciduous shrubs that are at home either in a patio container or in the garden. Also known as frangipani, the sweet-smelling white, yellow and pink blooms are native to Mexico, Central and South America, They are now popular world-wide, and are widely used in Hawaii to create leis. Plumerias are a tropical plant, so if you live in a cold climate, they’ll need some extra attention to survive the winter.

Watch for the plumeria’s leaves to turn yellow. This means the plant is going into dormancy, and it’s time to stop watering for the season.

Move the plumeria into a storage shed or garage as soon as the temperatures drop to 40 degrees because exposure to freezing temperatures will quickly kill the plant. Be sure you choose a storage place that won’t drop below 40 degrees. If you live in a warm climate, you can probably leave the plant outside, but move it next to a building where it will be sheltered in case of frost, or wrap it with a blanket or burlap bag.

Allow the plumeria to rest for the winter. Keep it in a dark area, and don’t water it. The leaves will continue to turn yellow and will eventually drop off. By spring, the plumeria will consist of just a stick, but don‘t be concerned. Move the plumeria back outdoors when you’re sure that any danger of frost has passed for the season, and it will soon return to its normal beauty.

 

Tip

  • Plumeria can also be brought indoors during the winter and raised as a houseplant. The temperature should be kept between 65 and 70 degrees, and the plants won't go into a dormant stage.

About the Author

 

M.H. Dyer began her writing career as a staff writer at a community newspaper and is now a full-time commercial writer. She writes about a variety of topics, with a focus on sustainable, pesticide- and herbicide-free gardening. She is an Oregon State University Master Gardener and Master Naturalist and holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative nonfiction writing.