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Propagating Stem Cuttings From Flowers And Herbs

Propagating stem cuttings from flowers and herbs can save you money. This article will take you through some very basic tips on how to properly cut stems, and the process to getting their roots established.

Most annuals flowers can be grown from seeds. There are a few that that can be done by stem cuttings. Begonias, Coleus, Geraniums, and New Guinea Impatiens grow well from stem cuttings. Many perennial flowers will do well also from stem cuttings.

Herbee has done both seeds and cuttings in a greenhouse, as well as indoors in the home. You don't need a greenhouse to grow your plants from stems. There is a basic rule of thumb for doing both annual and perennial flowers. Here are a few basic steps to take to successfully growing plants from stem cuttings.

Leaves Of Daphne Odora

Herbee's Steps To Stem Cutting

  1. Selecting the right plant is a very important first step. A parent plant is the best choice. Each plant you choose should be at its peak of the growing season. Midsummer is usually a great time to do stem cutting. The morning is the best time to get your cuttings. Don't spend a lot of time doing this.

  2. Take a sharp small paring knife and make a three to six inch angled cut above a leaf node, growth bud, or a side shoot. Sometimes you will find that some stems are woody. An easy solution to this is to cut closer to the tip.

  3. Once you have made the cut, take the stems immediately indoors. At this point you will want to re-cut the stems right below the node. This cut can be made by the same paring knife or a razor blade. A problem that can arise is if the cut is not a clean, angled cut. The stem cells and tissue could get damaged, and will result in an unsuccessful propagating process.

  4. The next step is planting the stem cutting. Before you go any further, make sure the side shoots, leaves, and any flower buds have been removed. Take and dip the the lower one-third to one-half of the stem in rooting hormone. Make sure there is no extra powder on the stem itself. Just tap off any excess. You can purchase rooting hormones at most garden centers or nurseries.

  5. Your container can be prepared ahead of time. The soil you use is called a rooting medium. It is made up of a combination of equal amounts of perlite and peat moss, and a coarse building sand. You can also substitute the peat moss with vermiculite. I have used these ingredients both ways and have had good success propagating stem cuttings.

  6. Poke a hole in the soil and put a stem about one-third to one-half of its length. Take the soil and with your fingers, gently put the dirt back around the stem. Go ahead and continue the planting process until all the stems are planted in the soil. At this time it is very important to water each of the cuttings. Herbee recommends using warm water. Both germinating plants from seeds and propagating from stems with warm water allows root systems to develop into healthy plugs.

  7. Once you have watered the cuttings, you will want to create a little greenhouse. Take a large, clear plastic bag and put over the cuttings. Make sure the bag is several inches above the cuttings. This can be done by adding stakes or sticks inserted around the edges of the container.

  8. Most annual cuttings will root quickly. After seven to ten days, be careful and gently lift one of the cuttings. The roots should be at least a fourth of an inch long. At this point you can transplant them into a one and a half inch container. You can also use the same type of soil mixture you did to start the cuttings. Water properly and wait at least three to four weeks to transplant into a larger container. Perennial flowers or herbs will take anywhere from one week up to a month to establish a good root system. Do the same process for the perennial as you did for the annual cutting.

Herbee loves to think of propagating as teaching children, students and yourself. Propagating from stem cuttings, or growing plants from seeds, will further knowledge on the plant's structure. It will also create an awareness of the outside natural environment. This is a project that can be done at home, school, or in a non-profit setting.

Herbee's Hot Buzz Containers And Planters

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The process of stem cutting can also be done on many different ornamental and other type of shrubs. One of the things we have been doing over the last few years is experimenting with different plant specimens, growing from seeds compared to root and stem cuttings.

Herbee will use an old wooden box, seedling trays, or other types of containers. Almost anything you have around the house can be used. This is not only a great way to save money, but it also teaches you about individual plant specimens and how they develop into healthy plants by doing the different methods of propagating and germinating from seeds. Plan today for your future outdoor investment.

Other Articles You Might Be Interested In.

Annual Flowers, Some For Propagating --- Perennial Flowers

Flower Bed Ideas --- More Herbee Tips on Gardening Care

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