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Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 9:14 am
by heli
Hi everyone, I'm from Brisbane and I'm new to this forum. I'm tidying up my garden and I expect I will have a lot of questions along the way, I look forward to a pleasant gardening experience.

My first question relates to this Cestrum Nocturnum near my fence. It has been allowed to grow to something like 2.5m tall, like in this photo:
Image

After doing some research, I decide to cut it down to 1m, and now it looks like this:
Image

My question is: since I have allowed it to grow to a big tree with a trunk of 16cm in diameter, and with the diametre of the thick branch at 6.5cm, I guess it cannot be turned back into a shrub now, can it? and with its position so close to the fence, I suppose my best option is to remove it totally.

Any suggestions?

Re: Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 3:04 pm
by bubba louie
All I know about it is that it has weed potential, and some health concerns.


http://www.health.qld.gov.au/poisonsinf ... samine.asp

Re: Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 8:50 pm
by heli
bubba louie wrote:All I know about it is that it has weed potential, and some health concerns.


http://www.health.qld.gov.au/poisonsinf ... samine.asp

Thank you, bubba, I guess I willl take that into consideration when deciding what to do with it.

Re: Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 5:09 am
by Pam
heli wrote:
My question is: since I have allowed it to grow to a big tree with a trunk of 16cm in diameter, and with the diametre of the thick branch at 6.5cm, I guess it cannot be turned back into a shrub now, can it? and with its position so close to the fence, I suppose my best option is to remove it totally.



I'll answer the last part first

with its position so close to the fence, I suppose my best option is to remove it totally.


Pretty much! It's going to be a pain trying to maintain it right up against the fence, and the thicker those stems get the more difficult it's going to be if you do have to remove it later.

So, with that in mind, you could perhaps try cutting the whole thing to ground level. It will either kill it, so previous problem solved, or it will reshoot, giving you lots of soft new growth more suited to growing the shrub that you want it to be.

Re: Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 7:53 am
by heli
Pam wrote:
heli wrote:
My question is: since I have allowed it to grow to a big tree with a trunk of 16cm in diameter, and with the diametre of the thick branch at 6.5cm, I guess it cannot be turned back into a shrub now, can it? and with its position so close to the fence, I suppose my best option is to remove it totally.



I'll answer the last part first

with its position so close to the fence, I suppose my best option is to remove it totally.


Pretty much! It's going to be a pain trying to maintain it right up against the fence, and the thicker those stems get the more difficult it's going to be if you do have to remove it later.

So, with that in mind, you could perhaps try cutting the whole thing to ground level. It will either kill it, so previous problem solved, or it will reshoot, giving you lots of soft new growth more suited to growing the shrub that you want it to be.


Thank you, Pam, that's exactly the kind of advice I'm looking for!

Re: Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 5:53 pm
by Tropicgardener
Some interesting information on this species in regards to toxicity...... I used to have it in a former garden growing up against a wall. I used to cut it back severely every 12 months. Whilst there are a number of Cestrum that environmental weeds I don't think this species is one. Despite flowering almost year round it didn't produce a lot of fruit and certainly wasn't a weed in my area. The scent of the flowers is overpowering so it needs to be planted well away from windows or doors and generally the plant is fairly insipid looking and as such wouldn't personally have it in my garden. In my new garden I have planted Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata) instead, it has a gorgeous scent.

Re: Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:29 pm
by GreenGeek
I planted a Cestrum years ago, then rented the house out. The tenants cut it (and nearly everything else) down to a 20cm stump. It re-shot, and its near the fence, so I chose one stem to be a new 'trunk' and keep it trimmed to a V shape, and its no problem. I love it scent at night, and its so tough, its easier to hack at it occasionally than dig it out and find something else.

Re: Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2014 9:31 am
by heli
GreenGeek wrote:I planted a Cestrum years ago, then rented the house out. The tenants cut it (and nearly everything else) down to a 20cm stump. It re-shot, and its near the fence, so I chose one stem to be a new 'trunk' and keep it trimmed to a V shape, and its no problem. I love it scent at night, and its so tough, its easier to hack at it occasionally than dig it out and find something else.

Hi GreenGreek, thanks for that information. What was the diameter of your tree stump that was cut? Was it similar to mine (16cm) or was it shorter?

Re: Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2014 9:32 am
by heli
Tropicgardener wrote:Some interesting information on this species in regards to toxicity...... I used to have it in a former garden growing up against a wall. I used to cut it back severely every 12 months. Whilst there are a number of Cestrum that environmental weeds I don't think this species is one. Despite flowering almost year round it didn't produce a lot of fruit and certainly wasn't a weed in my area. The scent of the flowers is overpowering so it needs to be planted well away from windows or doors and generally the plant is fairly insipid looking and as such wouldn't personally have it in my garden. In my new garden I have planted Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata) instead, it has a gorgeous scent.

Thanks for the information, especiallly about Ylang Ylang tree. I'll check it out.

Re: Should I remove this Cestrum Nocturnum completely?

PostPosted: Tue Jan 14, 2014 10:41 pm
by Tropicgardener
heli wrote:
Tropicgardener wrote:Some interesting information on this species in regards to toxicity...... I used to have it in a former garden growing up against a wall. I used to cut it back severely every 12 months. Whilst there are a number of Cestrum that environmental weeds I don't think this species is one. Despite flowering almost year round it didn't produce a lot of fruit and certainly wasn't a weed in my area. The scent of the flowers is overpowering so it needs to be planted well away from windows or doors and generally the plant is fairly insipid looking and as such wouldn't personally have it in my garden. In my new garden I have planted Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata) instead, it has a gorgeous scent.

Thanks for the information, especiallly about Ylang Ylang tree. I'll check it out.


The Ylang Ylang is a gorgeous tree that is native to North Queensland (as well as Asia) but they are very large so may not be suitable for your situation. I am on acreage so no problems for me.