Question about rooting hormone

CorpsmanCooper(FL8b)October 24, 2011

I've never used rooting hormone before and I'm thinking about picking some up today. Obviously I can use it on cuttings but what about leaves I'm trying to root? Also, on the plants that I managed to rot the roots, could I use it on them as well?

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bikerdoc5968 Z6 SE MI

As you know there are two major auxins available for use to the general public; Indole-3-butyric acid (IBA) and Napthalacetic acid (NAA). Schultz TakeRoot is one of the commercially available products containing IBA. Rootone is the other containing NAA and a fungicide, Thiram (tetramethylithiuramdisulfide 4.04%. Both are pretty good for rooting cuttings. I have used both and prefer Rootone because of the anti-fungal. I have found just placing leaf cuttings in a warm humid place to callus will usually promote roots of things like Echeveria.... but these are no-brainers anyway.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2011 at 9:11AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

I've used Rootone in the past.
With succulents, the rooting hormone encourages faster callusing, which in turn is what
leads to new root primordia/roots. If the cuttings are already callused, I wouldn't bother
with rooting hormone.


    Bookmark   October 24, 2011 at 9:28AM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi CC (I forgot your name or even if you gave it)

You really don't need to use everything you hear or read about. The particular plants you're rooting root readily enough without it.

Some folks consider rooting hormone unnecessary & a waste of money. Other folks consider the best part of rooting hormone to be the anti-fungal it usually contains. I've since learned cinnamon is an antifungal & can be used for the same purpose (combating fungus, not rooting).

To use rooting hormone on leaves is overkill (assuming they're Jade leaves) & completely unnecessary. What the leaves need most is TIME -- save your money (for other plants, I'm sure).

For the plants you've rotted the roots (if they're not already dead), pls. cut ALL the rot off, what you'd want is the cinnamon, for the antifungal.

I keep an old pepper shaker full of cinnamon, sprinkle it as needed, shake the branch or cutting off, repot the plant & then leave it alone for a few days.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2011 at 8:41PM
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Rootone's great for rotted plants, but something perhaps equally as effective is flowers of sulfur (sulfur powder, available at any compounding pharmacist's), but it doesn't have the auxin(s).

    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 12:40AM
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bikerdoc5968 Z6 SE MI

Boy, I wish we could learn some first names here.... but that is another subject. Both Pirate Girl and CactusMc are correct. I also grow orchids along with my cactus and succulents. Orchid growers have been using cinnamon forever as an anti-fungal especially for crown rot with Phals. Sometimes it is mixed with rubbing alcohol, allowed to "ferment" for several days producing an aldehyde and pouring off the liquid to be used in a sprayer. Pirate Girl makes another good point regarding the use of hormones and rooting many succulent leaves like Echeveria or Crassula. These usually root very easily without the use of any hormones as long as they are allowed to callus. The hormones are most helpful when trying to root more "woody" stemmed cuttings.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 8:19AM
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Thanks so much for the advice everyone! This was very helpful! I will be putting cinnamon in my arsenal for anti-fungal! I had no idea! Thanks for being so help to a newbie like myself! It's greatly appreciated!

~Erin~ (just for you bikerdoc)

    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 8:52AM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Something I wrote a while back to post on a different thread. It may not be dead on the mark for this thread, but there is some useful info in it:

Rooting aids
I don't think it's accurate to pitch a particular brand or type of rooting hormone because different plant species respond to different chemicals, whether we are cloning hardwood, summer wood, or herbaceous/tip cuttings. Even though it's generally true that the most effective concentration levels normally vary and can be roughly grouped by the 3 types of cuttings you mentioned, the most effective chemical to use also varies and can be much more important than concentration levels; so, it is a combination of the concentration AND the choice of chemical + type of cutting and time of year that determines the effectiveness of a rooting chemical.

The rooting aids are synthesized forms of the plant hormone/growth regulator 'auxin'. Indole butyric acid (IBA) and naphthalene acetic acid (NAA) are the two most common chemicals that have been found to be reliable in the promotion of rooting in cuttings. IBA is widely applied in general use because it is non-toxic to most plants over a wide range and promotes root growth in a large number of plant species.

Some plants respond better to either IBA or NAA, some respond to ONLY one or the other, some may have a toxic reaction to one but not the other which will lead to poor or no growth and actually, mortality; and some respond best to combinations of both chemicals, or to other variations of either IBA or NAA based on K (potassium). Both IBA and NAA are commonly available in talc or in liquid formulations of varying concentrations.

I do lots of propagating of several hard-to-root species, but only use a rooting aid occasionally for the most difficult. As a generalization, you should know on a per plant basis which chemical and concentration is most apt to be effective before applying it. I have found it mostly unnecessary. Learning a little about the cultural conditions cuttings prefer and some other tricks (like methods of wounding) along with cleanliness will add more to what it takes to be successful at propagating (plants) than rooting aids (except in the very hard to root plants).


    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 2:57PM
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I can't get pineapple tops to root without rooting hormone. Never really needed it for anything else.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 7:51PM
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ladylotus(Z3/4 ND)

I have a small greenhouse and do a LOT of propagation. Rootone works ok and as has been mentioned above, succulents don't really need rooting hormone. They root so easily without it.

For my hardwood cuttings and semi hardwood cuttings I use a product called Dip'N Grow. I use it on shrubs, certain kinds of conifers that do not require grafting and hard to root garden plants. I pretty much can get 95 to 100% success using this product. Please note I do not have any affiliations to this product/company. I am merely indicating what works for me.

I've also had very good success with a product called Clonex. It is a very easy to use product which does not require the mixing as the Dip'N Grow product.

I have had better success with the liquid products than I have had with the powder (rootone).

Good luck with whatever selection or method you choose.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2011 at 9:13PM
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I also don't bother with rooting hormones for succulents and cacti but I don't grow any varieties that I've found difficult to root. I use Dip & Grow for hardwood and semi-hardwood cuttings and rootone w/ fungicide for many others that are difficult to root. I've used both cinnamon and sulfur as a fungicide and prefer sulfur. I always use some type of fungicide on open cuts where I've removed rotted tissue.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2011 at 9:57AM
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My solution for rotted tissue:

1) Excise completely the rotted tissue
2) Spray after the last cut with isopropyl alcohol
3) While still wet, dust with sulfur powder
5) Keep dry
4) Use a clean knife (make sure the final cut, at least, is made with a sterile instrument - spraying its blade with the alcohol will do)

    Bookmark   October 26, 2011 at 11:38AM
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amanzed(10a Sunset 21)

I believe hormones degrade fairly quickly over time. I confess I keep my (probably too old) RooTone around... by this point, my jar probably only has active fungicide. The hormone is probably degraded.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2011 at 12:51PM
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I am new to rooting plants of any kind, but I have just tried a test run with a few rose cuttings with Bontone Rooting Powder I found at Home Depot(Only one I could find in stores in my area, though after further research on this site I may order something different online) and it's only been a few days since I started them in a seed starter mix I had lying around made of mostly sphagnum peat moss and perlite. I also have been rooting various succulent cuttings over the past few months without the use of rooting hormone and has thus far had great success with most varieties, though I have found a few to be difficult. I have two questions hoping to find more great advice from you all, as I have learned a lot from everyone's helpful advice on this site. My first question is similar to the original poster's one question which I didn't see an answer to, though I may have overlooked it, can you use rooting hormone(specifically rooting powder) on succulent leaves? and my second question is can you root aloe varieties from leaves?

    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 8:10PM
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Yes and no, but (1) succulent leaves usually don't need RH and (2) Aloe leaves won't root, but they may with some stem tissue. Oddly enough, the Aloe's relatives Gasteria and Haworthia will root from leaves.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 9:24PM
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LatinLady(6 New York City)

Interesting...I was just reading about the use of White Willow Bark to prepare an organic rooting solution. Aspirin, made from White Willow Bark, dissolved in water is recommended as an effective rooting solution. I will try that and let you know how that fares.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 12:09PM
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