Propagating plants from cuttings

For a cutting to make roots, it needs:

  • A moist medium with 50% drainage material and 50% organic. Like perlite, vermiculite, and then your sterile potting mix.

  • A humid environment like we have naturally during the summer months here in Central Florida, or covering the cuttings with plastic

  • A shaded location. Some sun would be ok (partial shade), but not full sun all day long.

  • Rooting in water - for example the African Blue Basil. Those 'water roots' need to go into soil in a pot before going into the ground to form 'true roots'.

Leaf cuttings

With some plants all there is needed to get a new plant is one single leaf.
For example: Hoya, African Violet, Drosera (Sun Dew), Jade plant, Rosary Plant, Aloe Vera, Kalanchoe, Begonia, Echeveria, to just name a few.

Those cuttings will  need to produce a growing point, the bud, AND the roots.

Stem cuttings

Some plants root very easy: Coleus, Basil varieties, Euphorbias, Pothos, Ivy, Cuphea, Hibiscus, Mints, to just name a few.
Those cuttings will need to produce just the roots.

Tips on taking cuttings:

  • For softwood cuttings, chose terminal shoots, for semi-hardwood cuttings, chose lateral shoots.

  • If easily rooted, flowering shoots are ok, if difficult to root, select vegetative shoots.

  • Timing: softwood = after spring flush, semi-hardwood = early summer

  • Difficult to root, take cuttings in winter, easy to root, take cuttings in spring and summer.

  • Do not fertilize until cutting is rooted and shows signs of growth.

  • When moving your rooted cuttings from a shaded location to a sunny spot, be aware the sun will tend to burn the leaves.