How to Propagate Petunias

How to Propagate Petunias

Petunias are a popular choice for gardening projects, window boxes and hanging baskets because of their bright colors and patterns, fragrance, ease of acquisition and relatively low maintenance needs. If you require large numbers of plants, you can save money by learning how to propagate petunias. This process is also useful for breeding a particular color, as some petunia seedlings are not true to their parent and will revert to white. Propagation of petunias is an uncomplicated process requiring only basic tools and little effort.

What You Will Need

To begin, you will need a light potting soil with adequate drainage, a small pot with drainage holes in the bottom, a pencil or thin stick, some water and the petunia you wish to clone. Fill the pot with the soil and pack it down gently. Make certain that the petunia is well-watered before hand, so that the cuttings have a better chance of survival.

Propagation

When taking cuttings from the mother plant, make the cut under a leaf joint, and in such a manner that there are at least three leaf joints on the clone. These are the nodes that the new roots will sprout from. Remove all of the lower leaves from the stem, as well as any flowers. This allows the new plant to focus its energy into root production. Transfer the cuttings to a container of water to keep them hydrated while you work.

Retrieve your pencil or thin stick and make several small holes in the soil. Into each of those holes, insert a cutting approximately two inches deep and then pack the soil around the stem gently. Repeat until all of the cuttings are planted and water thoroughly.

Set the container in a bright location, but not in full or direct sunlight. Shade is also acceptable. Keep the new plants moist at all times, especially on hot days, as they will easily become dehydrated and die. Water in the morning, or in the evening after the hottest portion of the day has passed.

The cuttings will begin to form their own roots within two to three weeks, and should not be disturbed during this time as the new roots are still very fragile. Propagated petunias may be transplanted to a new container or flower bed once they being showing signs of new growth and a strong root system.

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