Dracaena reflexa: Song of India

Family: Asparagaceae
Common name: Song of India, Song of Jamaica, Pleomele

Song of India plants make amazing indoor or outdoor plants with their beautiful foliage and tenacity, whatever be the growing conditions. This beautiful Dracaena plants can grow to a height of 6 meters under ideal circumstances, almost as tall as a tree. But most houseplants grow only about 2-3 meters and have a beautifully rounded crown.

They are slow-growing and require very little care in terms of watering or fertilization. They prefer indirect sunlight and can tolerate shady locations, like office spaces, lobbies, malls or living rooms.

When grown indoors, it is best to keep them near a sunny window. Or move them outside for a few days every month for healthy, thriving plants.

Leaves of Dracaena reflexa are dark green. But the variant called Song of India has variegated leaves with green at the center and yellow stripes on both sides. The leaves are about 15-20 cms long, sometimes straight and sometimes twisted into beautiful spiral shapes.

Bunches of leaves are tightly packed and form lovely rosettes at the tips of the stem. Song of India plants also produce small bunches of fragrant flowers and later small fruits. But the flowers and fruits are not very showy compared to the brilliant foliage.

Other species of Dracaenas commonly seen in Indian gardens are Dracaena marginata or Dragon tree, Dracaena trifasciata or Snake plant and Dracaena fragrans or Cornstalk plant. All these species are extremely low-maintenance and make good indoor and outdoor plants.

They are ideal plants for amateur gardeners who might forget to water or take care of their plants, since they like to be underwatered than overwatered. Unlike other plants, you can ignore your Dracaenas completely and still have them thrive in your garden. They are reasonably pest-resistant and don’t need regular pesticide sprays.

Propagation is from stem cuttings which root quite easily.

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