Stem cuttings and Leaf Cuttings

what to do

Things you need

In order to take tip cuttings, pick a healthy plant with lots of well-developed stems. Take your cuttings from the outside of the plant because the newer, softer pieces won’t grow root well. Keep the cuttings in good light and warmth until new growth shows that roots have taken. In order to encourage bushy growth, pinch them out at the growing points as they grow.
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When taking cuttings, use a sharp knife or scalpel to cut an 8 to 13 cm length of stem. Make sure the growing tip is at the end. Make your cut above the leaf joint or node and be sure to cut it at an angle away from the joint.

Just below the bottom of the leaf joint is where you should trim the stem. The leaf joint is where new roots will develop. You need to cleanly slide off the lower leaf or pair of leaves. If you are busy getting several cuttings, you can keep them in water until you’re ready to transplant.

If you are taking stem cuttings, using a sharp knife cut off a good length of stem. Cut the plant just above the leaf joints and divide the stems into small pieces. Make sure each piece has a leaf. Stick the cuttings into a pot of cuttings compost. You can place several to a pot. You don’t want to place the cuttings too close to the edges because the compost at the edges becomes too dry. Water the pot and then cover with a little plastic tent. Make sure the leaves don’t touch the plastic. When you see small new leaves, then the cuttings have rooted. These should then be transferred to smaller pots of potting compost

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Leaf cuttings

Things you need

Always select healthy, young, fully grown foliage. Avoid any damaged, diseased material or leaves affected by pests. Use pot or trays filled with free draining compost such as seed and cutting compost or mix equal quantities of multipurpose compost and sharp sand or perlite.

How to

Fill pots with propagating mix; firm the soil. Water well.

2. Using shears, cut leaves with stems from the mother plant (remove no more than about 10 percent of the foliage), snipping as close to the bases of the leaf stalks as possible. Select only healthy, fully grown leaves. Trim the stems to 1 to 1 ½ inches long.

3. With the pencil, poke 1½-inch holes in the soil just off-center.

4. Dip the stems in rooting hormone --knock off excess if it's the powdered kind.

5. Insert one-half to two-thirds of the stems into the soil, with the leaf tips pointing away from the pots' center. Gently firm the mix around the stems.

6. To speed up rooting and new growth, set the pots on a heating mat in bright, indirect light. Create a mini-greenhouse by inverting a plastic cup over the leaf as pictured. Be sure to keep the soil moist.

7. When new leaves form, fertilize with a dilute solution of fertilizer.

8. When leaves cover most of the soil surface, move young plants into larger pots. African violets usually produce a cluster of new plantlets; gently tease them apart and repot into separate containers.