Cloning Can Duplicate a Favorite Plant
and Save You Money

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Hydrangea

Do you have a favorite plant? Perhaps a sentimental one, a gift from a family member or friend? Or do you want to stretch your gardening dollars?

 

You can do both with cloning. Horticultural cloning uses snipped pieces from an existing plant, called the “mother plant,” to grow roots and develop into mature plants genetically identical to the parent. 

 

Cloning gels increase the number of cuttings that successfully develop roots. This material coats the cut edge to avoid air-drying and prevents air bubbles from forming in the stems, blocking critical moisture uptake. Cloning gels also incorporate gentle nutrients that encourage root development.

 

To clone a plant, you need:

 

  • the plant you want to clone

  • clean, sharp shears

  • a small container or containers with a seeding starting medium or potting mix

 

The process is easy:

 

  • cut a piece from the mother plant at a 45-degree angle 

  • immediately dip the entire stem of the cut portion into cloning gel

  • carefully slip the cutting into the container 

 

Rooting takes 3 to 15 weeks, depending on the type of plant you clone. Soft-stemmed plants root more quickly, while woody plants typically take longer. A gentle tug on the cutting helps determine if roots have developed.

 

Here’s a starter list of plants that clone easily: 

 

  • African violets

  • asters

  • basil

  • begonias

  • bellflowers

  • coleus

  • geraniums 

  • hoya

  • impatiens

  • ivies

  • lavender

  • lemon verbena

  • mint

  • oregano

  • rosemary

  • sage

  • salvias

  • succulents

  • thyme 

  • tomatoes

  Readily cloned shrubs include:

 

  • azalea 

  • lilacs

  • butterfly bushes (buddleia)

  • camellia

  • crepe myrtles

  • forsythia

  • gardenias

  • hydrangeas

  • roses

 

Search online for cloning information to learn the best seasonal timing for taking cuttings and any special considerations for a specific plant.

Click here for natural and effective cloning gel and here for an all-natural potting mix.

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