Autumn is here, and boy am I excited! Colorado is just lovely this time of year and with the changes of the seasons come beautiful fall foliage and crisper, colder air. If you are a gardener like myself, you will start to bring in those potted annuals and cut back your perennials in preparation for winter.
Now, I know what you’re thinking! How am I going to get my hands into that soil before spring? Being in the garden makes me so happy, and I wouldn’t dare miss the chance to get those serotonins flowing from some good ol’ dirt! Well, my friends, the answer is some simple propagation!
I have come to find that doing some propagation during the winter helps me get through those colder months with a little more sanity. There are a couple of methods I use that are easy and allow the plants to root rather quickly!
First off, let’s talk about a typical house plant such as the Epipremnum aureum or Golden Pothos. The first step in propagating these lovelies is to get a clean and sanitized pair of sheers or sharp blade. Next, you want to locate a bud on your plant, which are found just at the base of the petiole which connects the leaf to its stem. I recommend counting backward from the root tip about two to three nodes and making a cut just below the node point. Now, you want to cut off the bottom leaf closest to the node. This will allow another area for new root growth! After this is done, all you need to do is place this fresh cutting in a glass or jar of water in bright, indirect sun and let it grow! Once several roots have established, you can then move your cutting into a container with potting soil, and voila’ a new plant baby!
Another easy plant to propagate would be any succulent you may have around the garden or in the house. These are very simple because they store water within their cells, which gives them the ability to go longer periods of time without being watered and still thrive, which in turn makes them harder to kill.
With succulents, you can do a basic leaf cutting anywhere on your plant. Let the cutting air dry to form a callus for a day or two, then you can stick the leaves straight into dry soil! Place them near a window with adequate lighting with at least some direct sunlight for best results. After a few more days, you can give a little water to your baby succulents and they should root just fine!
These are just a couple of simple methods I use to keep my hands and mind busy with plants during the winter months. They also make for perfect budget-friendly gifts for the holidays. I mean, who doesn’t want more plants in their home?! They bring joy and are a token of love! So happy holidays and happy propagating to you all!
Sarah Catron is a long-time gardener and also serves at Clancy’s Irish Pub here in Wheat Ridge.