I have a Bird of Paradise bush. It is 6ft wide,6ft long,and 6ft high I am...

Asked March 22, 2018, 5:54 PM EDT

I have a Bird of Paradise bush. It is 6ft wide,6ft long,and 6ft high I am only here in Florida from Nov thru March. It has only had 4-5 flowering stems in the last three years. Questions 1.Should I cut this severely back, say to foot high,thin it out, and try to let it grow back? 2. Should I just leave it alone?3.Just thin it out from the base? 4.Should it be fertilized and how often? It is really gigantic but no flowers.

Palm Beach County Florida

1 Response

Thank you for your question. The national computer assigned this to the Oregon Extension service, and we don't have a lot of Bird of Paradise bushes here, but I found this Florida Extension article. It would indicate that a probable cause of its failure to bloom is that it needs to be divided. The underground root system is competing for water and food, and the aboveground foliage may be competing for light. I suggest that you follow the instructions for dividing it, and find a neighbor who can insure that it gets enough water before you return. Good luck!