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Dracaena Massangeana (Corn Plant freeze)

Left our Corn plant outside too long into the fall and it froze.  as seen on other sites / videos, advice was trim back all leaves and leave in bright inside area, not to water for awhile.  See pics.  Now thinking we need to actually trim the stems down, but not sure how far.  The tops are all dried out and brittle.

Posts

  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze I garden in South Notts on an improved clay soil Posts: 3,054
    @jcpenwardenU3W1hMrL I can't give you much advice, as you know it is classified as a tropical plant. The pot does seem small and I wonder if the roots were also frozen? It might be an idea just to carefully check them as well. You could try a gentle scratch of the bark further down to see if it is green which will be signs of life. I am sure other members will grow or have grown this so more help will be along soon hopefully.Welcome.
    The most serious gardening I do would seem very strange to an onlooker,for it involves hours of walking round in circles,apparently doing nothing. Helen Dillon.
  • philippasmith2philippasmith2 Posts: 2,402
    Not a hardy plant as you have discovered.  You can cut back the stems until you see any sign of life but it doesn't look too clever from your photos.  You could also remove from the pot and check the root ball.  Likely that has been affected by the frost too.  
    In the UK, they would be treated as indoor plants and only put outside in a shady spot during the warmer summer months. 
    Try it and see - best of luck  :)
  • Thanks for the tips.  Regarding pot size, I was shocked at how small it was at the nursery, since it is not like a new-born plant.  Our landscaper said it was OK, but could go a tad bigger.  This pot is about 1/3 bigger than from nursery.  We bought this plant back in June.
  • @philippasmith2, we had it on our front porch, in shade from June until mid-October.
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze I garden in South Notts on an improved clay soil Posts: 3,054
    edited 11 January
    I wonder where you live in the country north or south. I am sure your landscaper would have told you it is tropical.Taking it out of the pot is the only way to find out if it is pot bound or if the roots are alive.
    You purchased in June, a good nursery should have had information on the label regarding it's care.
    I would normally suggest returning a plant that fails in such a short time however it has been outside in a very cold November. Sadly plants in pots are even more vunerable than those in the ground and your porch may have also been just too cold.
    The most serious gardening I do would seem very strange to an onlooker,for it involves hours of walking round in circles,apparently doing nothing. Helen Dillon.
  • bédébédé Surrey Hills, acid greensand.Posts: 1,304
    Taking it out of the pot is the only way to find out if it is pot bound or if the roots are alive.

    Another way is to wait and watch.
    "Have nothing in your garden that you don't know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful."
  • Just informed by my wife that the smallest and middle are showing new tiny growths, yet the biggest has cracking bark.

    We are Richmond VA
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze I garden in South Notts on an improved clay soil Posts: 3,054
    edited 11 January
    I would still take a look at the roots not difficult to do. I guess it has been very cold for you too.
    If you work your way down the cracking bark to an area where it is firm try the scratch test. I cannot advise on whether or not you should cut back to where there are signs of growth unless it really starts to rot, my thoughts would be to carry out any pruning that is absolutely necessary in spring.  
    The most serious gardening I do would seem very strange to an onlooker,for it involves hours of walking round in circles,apparently doing nothing. Helen Dillon.
  • philippasmith2philippasmith2 Posts: 2,402
    @philippasmith2, we had it on our front porch, in shade from June until mid-October.
    Sadly then your porch is really too cold for the plant if it dropped below freezing during the period you mention.
    Still worth checking the rootball ( the pot as you say is rather small ) to see whether it has been affected beyond help.  If you see signs of life in one stem, then your best bet is to clean it up, keep it warm and see what happens :)
  • It was fine until October.  Then had a few days below freezing.  We forgot it was out there.

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