Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Singapore Plumeria
Plumeria obtusa

Family: Apocynaceae (a-pos-ih-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Plumeria (ploo-MEER-ee-a) (Info)
Species: obtusa (ob-TOO-suh) (Info)

» View all varieties of Plumeria

19 members have or want this plant for trade.

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Tropicals and Tender Perennials

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)
10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)
12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)
15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)
36-48 in. (90-120 cm)
4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)
6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)
8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Blooms all year


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Flowers are fragrant
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Flowers are good for cutting
Suitable for growing in containers

Soil pH requirements:
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From herbaceous stem cuttings
From woody stem cuttings
From softwood cuttings
From semi-hardwood cuttings
Allow cut surface to callous over before planting
By air layering

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

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There are a total of 33 photos.
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7 positives
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive BayAreaTropics On Apr 8, 2014, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:

In March 2014 I ordered a cutting of P.obtusa. It came and was a nice 14-15" hunk. I planted in potting soils with 60% perlite. But being it was still March I felt like it needed some help even I bought a heating mat to put under the cutting. As of mid April,I see new leaves juuuuust moving. I will update as I often try to do on DG.
btw,Whats said about the plant that I hope is true, is that Plumeria obtusa is a much better potted Plumeria plant then P.rubra. We will see.

ADDED: Its now mid June of 2014,and its still unfolding...the stem has rooted as the plant has filled in the wrinkles it developed as a bare cutting. Glossy stem tip. Pretty much even with a Royal Hawaiian P.rubra cutting started at the exact same day. Both are outside in pots in full sun now.

ADDED: Now in late September,its now in a 3 gallon pot,green,lush and growing. All on our moderate 75-80f summer days. Full southwestern exposure boosts heat.
Winter?...wait for that update.

Neutral homespie01 On Feb 23, 2014, homespie01 from Corpus Christi, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

Has anyone grown this in-ground in or near Corpus Christi, TX?

Positive greenthumb61 On Jun 11, 2011, greenthumb61 from Phoenix, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

Neutral Lakehoney On Apr 28, 2011, Lakehoney from Gun Barrel City, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Does anyone know how to cause this plant to branch out?

Positive Tetrazygia On Jun 7, 2008, Tetrazygia from Miami, FL (Zone 10b) wrote:

Plumeria obtusa is native to much of the Caribbean and sometimes also listed as native to parts of extreme South Florida (Monroe and Collier counties), although in general it is considered naturalized here.

Like P. pudica, P. obtusa is evergreen in South Florida and looks nice all year round. The white flowers are very fragrant and trees regularly set seed. Plants are very easy to care for if kept in well draining soil, and generally do not benefit from any supplemental water here. Plumerias planted in swales or in moist areas fail to thrive and are prone to rot.

Positive Barrymiami On Aug 5, 2007, Barrymiami from Miami, FL wrote:

Bought it at Home Depot about four years ago. In full sun with southern exposure. In bloom most of the year.
Use good grade time release palm fertilizer three times
a year, soaker hose. Very lush; will probably trim in back
a litte and use trimmed branches to try to start new plants.
We live in south Miami Dade County, Florida

Positive Clare_CA On Dec 8, 2005, Clare_CA from (Zone 10b) wrote:

From the publication:

Plumeria in Hawaii

By Richard A. Criley
Department of Plant and Soil Sciences
College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources
University of Hawaii at Manoa
January, 2005


Flower white with small, brilliant yellow center; no pink or red bands on front or back
Petal wide, round tip, no overlapping; no color bands; moderate texture
Size three-and-one-half inches in diameter
Scent strong lemon fragrance
Stalk green, smooth except for corky lenticels, upright, tight flower clusters
Keeping quality poor
Leaves dark green, glossy, with obtuse tips; venation raised underneath
Plant habit upright, dense branching, branches gray-green and knobby; suitable for landscaping
Bearing habit May to October, moderate flower production
Parentage P. obtusa
Remarks Known more for its dark green leaves and evergreen characteristics than for its easily discolored flowers, this cultivar is recommended for home gardens only. It is susceptible to aphids and scales, and an insecticide or light oil spray is advised to prevent sooty mold on the lower branches.

Positive palmbob On Jun 19, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

This plumeria actually does well in zone 10a in southern California, and I have had one in zone 9b for 5 years with minimal (but always some) cold damage. I personally have found this species is actually MORE cold tolerant than the more commonly planted P rubra. It does sort of become deciduous at this extreme of its climate range, and it prone to rot if you're not careful... slower grower than P rubra, the more common species out here in So Cal. Flowering is far less frequent, as well. This plant tends to do well for very long time kept in a pot, which is not necessarily the case with most Plumeria rubra varieties.

You can tell if from P rubra in that it is NOT deciduous (normally) and the leaves are more deeply divided with prominent veins that run nearly perpendicular to the long axis of the leaf. Leaves also shiny and a darker green and a bit smaller. As a tree it is more compact and much more densely foliated and P rubra. Dwarf forms of this plant are also common in cultivation. Flowers invariably white with slight yellowish centers.

Positive DaraMV On Apr 18, 2004, DaraMV wrote:

The Singapore Plumeria, Plumeria obtusa, is evergreen though it is a little less cold tolerant than other plumerias. Flowers come only in white with a little yellow center. Much more fragrant that other plumeria varieties. It is my favorite plumeria.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Phoenix, Arizona (4 reports)
Burbank, California
Fillmore, California
Hayward, California
Los Angeles, California
San Diego, California
Cocoa, Florida
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Largo, Florida
Lehigh Acres, Florida
Melbourne, Florida
Melbourne Beach, Florida
Miami, Florida (2 reports)
Palmetto, Florida
Honomu, Hawaii
Kurtistown, Hawaii
Lahaina, Hawaii
Broaddus, Texas
Canyon Lake, Texas
Deer Park, Texas
Houston, Texas
San Antonio, Texas

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