Now that it has been over a month since the Autumnal Equinox, have you had a chance to begin propagating your favorite plants? Well if the answer is “no,” then you’re not alone. But, if you want to have an array of say those beloved Veronicas blooming by next year, then now is the time [...]
Propagating by cuttings has a lot of advantages compared to re-seeding, and it’s especially valuable if you have a clear winner among your crops. When you have a plant that grows larger, has a greater yield, or flowers beautifully, crossing it with other plants can diminish some of its desirable traits.
Taking a cutting means that your perfect plant will stay perfect. Once your cutting takes root and begins to grow, your new plant will be genetically identical to the plant it was cut from.
People have been cloning plants in one way or another for thousands of years. For example, when you take a cutting from a plant and grow it into a new plant (vegetative propagation), you are cloning the original plant because the new plant has the same genetic makeup as the donor plant. Vegetative propagation works because the end of the cutting forms a mass of non-specialized cells called a callus. With luck, the callus will grow, divide and form various specialized cells (roots, etc.), eventually forming a new plant.
Growing new plants from cuttings is a great way to increase your stock in a relatively short time. Rooted cuttings are often sturdier than seedlings, and come to maturity faster, many of them bearing flowers and fruits much earlier than seedlings.
Plants grown from cuttings are exact clones of the parent plant, so you know exactly what you’re growing, which is not the case with seed-grown plants. That’s why many gardeners prefer to grow new plants from cuttings even when they can be easily grown from seeds. Populating your garden with cuttings is very cost effective. A single plant can give you plenty of cuttings without jeopardizing its health and saves you a lot of money.
One of the many wonderful things about Spring, and there are many wonderful things about Spring, is the fact that it’s bug season. Yes, bug season. Now, many people cringe at just the thought of bugs and they do so for many good reasons. Unless you are an armchair entomologist who has an affinity for [...]
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