Can Lysionotus be propagated by leaf cuttings?

mark4321_gwFebruary 14, 2013

I realize that sounds like a pretty odd way to propagate Lysionotus, but I just took a couple stem cuttings. I stripped off some lower leaves and hate to toss them if they can potentially root/create plantlets. They don't have much in the way of petioles.

I suppose I could also ask the more general question: is there a good list of Gesneriads that can and cannot be propagated by leaf cuttings? I assume there are some that "can" but probably are not worth the trouble...

In case anyone is wondering, I removed the leaves by peeling them off the stems, not cutting them off. I figured there might be a delay in getting a response so I stuck them in moist perlite.

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irina_co(z5 CO)

I had trouble starting Lysionotus pauciflorus from the cutting - it took long long time. I am thinking that it depends on the time of the year - a new shoot in spring will root - and a hardened cutting in a fall will resist rooting. I doubt leaves worth the effort - unless it is so rare that you want to create multiple starters. I would think that this time of the year - there are L. rhiizomes in a soil -you can get out - separate -divide- and start.

I was amazed to find out that Kohleria leaves root and start new shoots easily. The only one Kohleria that refuses to start from leaves - puts a lot of roots but no new growth - is K. allenii in my experience. Smithiantha leaves root - and develop a rhizome from it, no shoots. Good enough for the new year.
Aeschynanthus and Nematanthus do start from leaves - very slowly. Same is Episcia - slow and the success rate is not that high.

Medium Sinningias start from leaves - speciosa - is very easy - minis - very low success rate - and large ones - never happened to me. Probably with Rooton and lots of patience... Tip cuttings root readily.

Naturally AVs, Streps, Primulinas (chiritas) are mostly propagated by leaves- but sure suckers work faster.

With the modern technology you can propagate anything - I am talking meristem propagation. In some cases it is probably worth the cost.


    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 1:45PM
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Thanks for all the information--that's incredibly useful. It's the sort of practical information that often gets passed on by word of mouth but is often never written down. I remember looking once to see whether Nematanthus can be propagated by leaf cuttings and I found conflicting reports--with no explanation.

I realized that rooting by cuttings was probably not the most efficient way to propagate Lysionotus. When I bought it last September in a sale at Strybing Arboretum (photo at bottom, plant in upper right), I tipped it out of the pot to look for suckers/rhizomes. I didn't see any. Before I took the recent cutting I checked again and saw two at the edge of the pot (I still need to get the plant into a proper (mesh) pot). I didn't want to remove all the new growth, so I decided to go for the mature shoot. I split one piece into three 2-node cuttings. I'll update here on success/failure of rooting.

This is just normal Lysionotus pauciflorus, I think. It came labeled "Lysionotus warleyensis" which I gather is a synonym. Since I already have the leaves in perlite, I'll see what happens and report the results here.

A few years ago I picked up Lysionotus pauciflorus from Annie's Annuals for a friend. I was amazed how much growth was packed into the pot. I believe it was about May, and the plant was just coming into bloom--and had dozens of buds. I did sneak a couple of the new shoots at that point, but ended up giving them away due to a move. I think Annie's no longer carries the plant. It's a shame--they used to sell beautiful ones.

Below: plants bought at Strybing monthly sale last September. I'm not 100% sure about the prices. Clockwise from top: Dichroa febrifuga ($6), Lysionotus warleyensis ($8), Crusea coccinea ($4), Monocaetum tenellum ($4), Impatiens marianae ($4). Also bought, not shown: Passiflora membranacea, 1 gallon ($15). All are still alive except I. marianae. P. membranacea is in the ground and will soon become a huge vine...

Here is a link that might be useful: Monthly plant sales at SF Botanical Garden (Strybing)

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 9:57PM
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irina_co(z5 CO)

Some people are incredibly lucky to live in SF area!

Great Job in keeping most of your purchases alive and blooming!

If you are not a member of a Gesneriad Society - consider it - it is worth it just because of the access to the seed fund - you can start your own Lysionotus paucifloris for $2 a seed pack. Plus - SF is going to host a National Gesneriad Convention in 2015.


    Bookmark   February 15, 2013 at 2:05PM
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I have a plant I would like to propagate. Thanks for posting the information. I was able to bend a stem and bury it in a container I placed next to the mother plant. Eventually it made roots and I got another plant from the experiment. Fortunately I did this because the mother plant eventually died. I will try rooting new shoots when it starts making them in the next couple of months.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 10:51AM
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I just wanted to update this and say that, so far, two of the stem cuttings, and one of the leaf cuttings have started growing roots. The stem cuttings are starting to put out new growth as well. I'll update this, particularly to indicate whether it looks like the rooted leave(s) are producing plantlets.

I'm not sure if I mentioned it--the shoot I used for the stem cuttings was mature and previously bloomed. The leaves were broken off, not cut, close to or at the stem.

Irina, we are lucky to live in this area, although of course the climate makes growing a lot of things pretty easy. I understand the SF/Bay Area Gesneriad society is particularly active. I think their sales tend to be on the same days, and at times that conflict with those of the SF Botanical Garden (Strybing). Or maybe those are just the ones I've run across. This, of course, is good and bad for those of us who would tend to go to the more general sales. The ones I'm aware of have been at Strybing so it's of course a quick walk from one to the other.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2013 at 4:40AM
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irina_co(z5 CO)

I think they even meet at Strybing.

There are some of really good growers there - and I am sure lots of rarities at their sale.


    Bookmark   March 5, 2013 at 12:01PM
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Hi Irina,

Their site indicates they do meet at Strybing (SF Botanical Garden), although I think they just give the location as the County Fair Building. That building is right on the edge of the Arboretum, near the main gate. Maybe it's not technically "inside" in the Arboretum.

I give a link at the bottom to their Fall show and sale from last year, which illustrates the "problem" of those of us who go to the monthly Strybing sales. The sale last Fall was on September 8th at 10:00 A.M. The monthly Strybing sale was at exactly the same time, about a 10 minute walk away. I was really looking for a 1 gallon P. membranacea, which I found for $15. For whatever reason those plants have been in short supply lately locally. And I found the Lysionotus, among other plants. I don't remember, but I may have skipped the Gesneriad sale simply because I had too much stuff already.

So in a situation like that I have to make a choice as to which sale to hit first. I can certainly go to both, but chances are some of the best stuff will go fast at both sales. It would be nice if one of the sales could shift its start time by one hour...

There are of course, worse "problems".

1 gallon Passiflora membranacea, $15:

Here is a link that might be useful: Last year's Fall SF Gesneriad Society Show and Sale

    Bookmark   March 5, 2013 at 2:20PM
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irina_co(z5 CO)

Mark -

Since we cannot grow everything - we decide what is our primary interest - inside plants, outside plants - or green turnips exclusively.

Since my primary interest is Gesneriaceae - I would be at their sale first. And you have broader interests - so you are in a monthly sale.



    Bookmark   March 5, 2013 at 4:31PM
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Just to answer my original question: Lysionotus can indeed be propagated by leaf cuttings. However, it seems to be slow, at least under my conditions, at this time of year. In my case I had the leaves as "leftovers" from making stem cuttings. There is definitely good reason to save the leaves and not toss them.

I admit with some embarrassment that I thought I had lost these leaf cuttings, or that they had gone bad and I tossed them without realizing what they were. Nearly 5 months after starting them, I finally found them fallen behind some stuff while doing some rare cleaning.

I think I started with roughly ten or twelve leaves. Two or three rotted and were tossed. Of the remaining ones, all but one has strong roots. Two (so far) have clear signs of new growth and I assume will make new plants. Everything has been in perlite all this time; I moved the leaves below into soil:

    Bookmark   July 6, 2013 at 11:28PM
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To follow up on the other issue of whether to go to the general sale or the Gesneriad sale at Strybing, the problem again arose in June with sales in different locations starting at the same time. I went to the general sale first, where I picked up a stunning Mitraria coccinea ($8 or $10, I don't remember). Later I went to the other sales (there were a whole set of them), including the Gesneriad sale, where I got a cutting of Nematanthus 'Champagne Jam' for $2, and a variegated Monstera, $6, discounted from $8 because they thought I was wavering (I wasn't). I guess there's no way to know what went fast at the Gesneriad sale.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2013 at 11:38PM
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