A Mass cane (Dracaena frangrans “Massangeana” or Dracaena fragrans) needs to habituate to the environment and the riskiest time is in the first few months. It your Mass cane is in good shape after 6 to 8 months; it can go years. Starting with transporting the often-top heavy canes, you’ll need to either have it delivered upright and secured in a truck or lay it down carefully in your car so as not to disrupt the canes. Packing the soil and the area between the canes with whatever, paper, Styrofoam or cardboard then tie them together with packing tape to help secure them. This is the way they are transported out of the nursery. Do not use the canes as a convenient handle, as temping as it may be. The more the canes are wiggled back and forth in the pot, the more you may be breaking off precious root systems.
Your Mass cane does not need much water. About a quart for the 10-inch and two quarts for the 14-inch. Depending upon the foliage volume (more for a big fat plant) and light (more for bright light) you might water it about once per month. But do check the soil, if it’s dry to the touch 3-inches down, water it, but try to stick with the volumes I just mentioned. It may not be perfect, but it’s better than playing a guessing game. The Mass cane pictured here has not been watered in 6 months!
Mass cane, if isolated get few pests but you can get mealy bug or mites. Because of the way the leaves are arranged you also get dust. A gentle wipe down with a wet micro cloth every once in awhile will take care of the dust and even help to kill any bugs. A wet, soapy, soft paint brush will get into all the nooks and crannies and go a long way to kill mealy bugs or mites, just add a good rinse. How often is once in a while? How dusty is your house? Our professional technicians dust or clean plants weekly. If you are really in love with your Mass cane, well, it may get that soothing stress relieving spa treatment more often. Complete with “Sounds Of the Planet” if that’s not too much.
Some designers may look down their snoots at the popular Mass cane, thinking it far too common. Even some plant professionals tire of the Mass cane and shun it in their designs, but not me. The iron tough, almost-Roundup-proof Mass cane is a top choice when a big floor plant is needed to build on the décor in your office or home.
David Liu President at Foliage Design Systems
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