Making more plants through simple propagation techniques is one of the most fun, productive and inexpensive ways to grow your garden and expand your knowledge.
Propagating plants is a simple process; however, the mystique behind the practice prevents many gardeners from trying to do it themselves.
Join GGW gardening correspondent and plant propagation expert, Brie Arthur, as she and host, Joe Lamp’l, show you some of their tips for successfully making more plants from your very own garden.
Brie’s extensive experience as a horticulturist and professional plant propagator has given her a wealth of experience and knowledge that she shares with us in this episode.
Making More Plants with Rooting Cuttings
Rooting cuttings is what’s known as asexual propagation and is one of the easiest and most effective ways to propagate additional plants. When it comes to actually taking the cuttings, there are some specific methods to follow.
You always want to use a sharp knife to take cuttings, and remove flowers and flower buds to allow the energy to be focused on root and shoot production.
Take your cutting from new growth at the tip of the plant, and cut just below a node, where a leaf comes off the stem.
After taking the cutting and before planting, you can use rooting hormones to speed things along, but they aren’t always necessary. With woody stems especially, they can help promote rooting and increase the number of roots while ensuring uniform and quicker rooting.
Once you’ve successfully taken a cutting and placed it in the growing media, keep them in a shady location, and don’t let the soil dry out. Be patient at this stage. Watch for roots to appear at the bottom of the pot. That’s when you know that the plant is established enough to pot up into a larger container.
Cuttings should be planted in a well-drained, sterile, soilless media. Brie’s preference is three parts ground pine bark to 1 part perlite.
In general, the rooting medium should be low in fertility, drain well enough to provide oxygen, but retain enough moisture to prevent saturation.
Moisten the media before you insert the cuttings, and keep it evenly moist while cuttings are rooting and forming new shoots.
Though not necessary for successful propagation, rooting hormones can help speed things along. You will find a wide selection of rooting hormones in garden centers and online.
Brie uses a powder hormone for rooting spring softwood cuttings. She prefers a diluted liquid formula for summer semi-hardwood cuttings and a gel formula for hardwood conifer cuttings.
Simply put, plant propagation is the process of making more houseplants, vegetables, and flowers from those plants you already have and love.
Plant propagation fascinates just about every plant lover, but the process can seem difficult to master at first. Understanding the basics will equip any backyard gardener with the skills they need to confidently take on the rewarding activity of making more plants for free.
For more details, be sure to read this in-depth article from Brie Arthur and check out other resources below to help you master plant propagation.
Links & Resources
Plant Propagation Article by Brie Arthur
*Disclosure: Some product links in this guide are affiliate links, which means we would get a commission if you purchase. However, none of the prices of these resources have been increased to compensate us. None of the items included in this list have any bearing on any compensation being an influencing factor on their inclusion here. The selection of all items featured in this post and podcast were based solely on merit and in no way influenced by any affiliate or financial incentive, or contractual relationship. At the time of this writing, Joe Lamp’l has professional relationships with the following companies who may have products included in this post and podcast: Rain Bird, Corona Tools, Milorganite, Soil3, Exmark, and Park Seed. These companies are either Brand Partners of joegardener.com and/or advertise on our website. However, we receive no additional compensation from the sales or promotion of their product through this guide. The inclusion of any products mentioned within this post is entirely independent and exclusive of any relationship.