It can be frustrating for a plant lover to see her little conifer not growing.
Your Podocarpus has received all the love, light, and water. But it’s still not growing fast.
What to do?
You can figure out the general reasons behind it and ways to resolve this.
How to make Podocarpus grow faster?
Podocarpus isn’t high maintenance, but you must look for common factors. Proper grooming, optimum soil hydration, and fertilization can help your plant grow faster. Making sure your Podocarpus receives enough sunlight and warmth is a must too.
These are just the highlights. There are other factors too. I’ll go through each of these more in-depth in the following sections.
Let’s get right at it!
Factors That Affect Podocarpus Growth Rate
Podocarpus is both an indoor and outdoor plant. It can grow quite large growing outdoors, reaching up to 20 meters. They can reach up to six feet tall when they’re grown indoors.
Indoor gardeners must understand interior environment effects on plant growth. And they also need to know about cultivation differentiation from outdoor gardening.
Here, we look at why your plant isn’t growing fast enough.
Factor 1: Poor Drainage
Soils with poor drainage become soaked and saturated, affecting plant growth. Saturated soils reduce oxygen availability and pathogen resistance for roots. In that case, unclog the drain.
Factor 2: Soil Too Waterlogged or Dry
Waterlogging causes root function to reduce or even die off. Thus, it hampers the overall equilibrium, hindering plant growth. Balancing the soil texture here is essential.
Factor 3: A Prolonged Period of Cold Weather
The problem arise primarily related to the leaves. Frost or freezing weather causes leaves to shed. As a result, the growth of Podocarpus gets hampered.
Factor 4: Suffer From Brown Patches
Brown leaves on Podocarpus indicate brown patches. It will eventually kill the shrub. It can happen if you keep watering the plants for more than a week.
Watering too little or too much can even cause a plant’s demise. So, properly plant and water the Podocarpus following the right way.
Factor 5: Insufficient Light
Without enough sunshine, The shrub’s growth may slow down. Sufficient sunlight will increase bushier because a lack of sun means a lack of nutrients.
Factor 6: Wrong Choice of Fertilizers
Wrong fertilization can stunt development and make plants susceptible to pests and illnesses. Also, the chemical of the fertilizer might be incompatible or too toxic for the Podocarpus.
Factor 7: Lack of Proper Spacing
Overcrowded Podocarpus grow poorly. It has specific spacing requirements for optimum growth. So while planting them, ensure the proper spacing of the bushes from each other.
Factor 8: Pest infestation
Your ignorance can lead your shrub to get infected by insects. Their interference limits Podocarpus from reaching their genetic potential.
A slower rate indicates a lot of things. Poor drainage soil is a warning to plant in a raised bed or mound or choose more tolerant plants.
Methods to Make Podocarpus Grow Faster
To keep your garden evergreen, there are different types of planting care solutions available. Using them, you can bring back the rose bush life. Again grow the Podocarpus faster than ever.
Here’s some legit information on growing Podocarpus plants quickly.
Method 1: Plant Spacing
On average, Podpcarpus should be spaced one-third to one-half their maturing speed apart.
Place these shrubs 3 feet apart to create a hedge. Along a walk or driveway, space should be 4 to 5 feet to allow for mature size.
Hedges are planted better by digging a trench than holes. Podocarpus will grow in a large container as well.
Method 2: Pruning And Trimming
New stem growth should be pruned back to foster side branches and a bushier plant.
Podocarpus trees require biannual pruning. In the fall to ensure new spring growth and in summer to restore secondary growth.
Young plants look sparse and brittle, so prune them back in the spring. Trim the foliage as required to enhance the growth.
Method 3: Proper Watering and Feeding
As long as the plant isn’t allowed to dry out, it’s okay. It would help if you let the top 2 inches dry out before watering again. It’s also necessary to keep the soil moist but not soaked.
In winter, reduce the frequency of watering and avoid fertilizing. Feed them with half the recommended strength of acid-loving plant food like Miracid.
Method 4: Providing Sunlight and Shade
The most crucial aspect of Podocarpus’s growth rate is how much sunlight and warmth it receives.
It needs at least six hours of direct sunlight each day to thrive.
Their bushes grow more significant when they’re planted in full sun. Even if they can grow in full sun, these shrubs may also live in the shade. In hot summer, make sure there’s enough shade for the plants.
Method 5: Maintaining Temperature And Humidity
Podocarpus prefer 61°F – 73°F outdoor temperatures. Their hedges thrive in USDA zones 9–11. They won’t grow as hedges below 12°C.
These shrubs can’t endure extreme temperatures, whether hot or cold. They prefer a medium level of humidity. They also wanted a location that refrained from harsh winter winds.
But in case of extreme temperature, a humidistat could work for indoor Podocarpus plants wonderfully.
Method 6: Providing Fertile Soil
Podocarpus mostly prefers fertile, slightly acidic, well-draining soil. It can be planted almost anywhere though it thrives in acidic and neutral soils. The shrub can be planted near water, too, as it has salt tolerance.
This shrub grows the best in sandy/loamy soil. Sandy soil lacks magnesium which is good for plant growth. Supplement the roots with Epsom salt to get optimum results.
Method 7: Fertilizing Properly
In Ground: During spring, feed them with the slow-release shrub. Also, ensure tree food containing iron and sulfur for deep greening. Providing natural organic plant food is also an option.
In Containers: Feed them with slow-release granular plant fertilizer. You can also opt for water-soluble liquid plant food specified for plants in containers.
The user’s main challenge is selecting the right fertilizer from the market’s vast selection. So to help you, we’ve tried mentioning some all-rounder fertilizers!
We guarantee that these fertilizers will help your Podocarpus grow faster and keep them disease-free.
Method 8: Pest Advisory
Fungal problems in the roots can be created by Wet/damp soil that hinders the plant’s growth.
So, it’s recommended to prune overgrown plants, plant in sunny places, and avoid over-fertilizing
Crop protection includes three things. It uses products, methods, and practices to protect crops from pests and diseases. The most common approach to regulating problems is to use pesticides and insecticides to kill off pests.
When should you reduce pruning Podocarpus trees?
Answer: Avoid pruning in the fall, when the first frost is approaching. Late season pruning will produce new growth, which is more susceptible to damage by cold weather.
Is Podocarpus drought tolerant?
Answer: Yes, it is drought tolerant. It’s best to water regularly, allowing the plant to dry out between waterings.
Can Podocarpus grow in pots?
Answer: Podocarpus in pots prefers moist but well-drained soil. Choose a container that will accommodate the growth of 2 to 3 years before upgrading.
I hope you found this guide on how to make Podocarpus grow faster.
You can make your shrubby conifer grow faster with the proper maintenance and care. The soil pH is quite essential for better growth as well.
That’s all for now. Happy gardening!