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What went wrong?

Posted by wishfulthinking 6IN (My Page) on
Tue, Jun 5, 07 at 12:30

I tried cuttings of Huntington Artemesia, coleus, penstemon, calibrachoa, mums, althea, aster & maybe a couple of other thinbgs. Stuck them about May 19. The only ones to root were the penstemon. For the first week or so everything looked fine, but eventually things started rotting. This was in the easy propagation chamber described in another post here and I think the chamber is great and not the problem with my cuttings. I'm wondering about two things: 1) Could I have over-misted? I used a hand held mister pretty often for several days. Maybe that mist wasn't fine enough? 2) Could my rooting hormone be too old? I used Root Tone that I've had for a million years.
Any suggestions on rooting the artemesia in particular? It looks so great with so many other plants. I want lots of it. Thanks!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: What went wrong?

I'd guess that excess moisture is the problem. This could be caused by an overly wet medium, too much misting, lack of ventilation, and/or a potting medium that holds on to moisture for too long. Artemisia, in particular, despises overly moist conditions.

I can't speak to the issue about the RootTone. I don't use a rooting hormone anymore.

Since we don't know anything about your propagation techniques, can we assume that you've read up on how to make proper cuttings? (How long they should be, where to make the cut, leaf removal, and all that jazz.)

I'd use a 100% perlite or 50/50 ratio with peat for your next batch of cuttings.

RE: What went wrong?

I don't mist anything in the Easy Propagation Chamber. I use the little clay pot with the drainage hole plugged, filled with water and set in the medium. Be sure the medium is moist to begin with, the pot is filled, (and not a glazed pot), stick the cuttings and put on the lid. Water will seep through the walls of the clay pot, condensation will form on the lid and sides of the chamber, and the chamber will not dry out. You should not need to mist it at all.

I usually use a 50/50 mix of peat and perlite.

I have found that artemesia can be tricky. I usually layer it, by setting a small pot of damp medium close to the mama plant and placing a node that has been lightly scraped on the medium. You can keep it in place with a light rock or a piece of wire bent to form a hair pin. Just 'staple' it down until it roots, then cut it from the parent plant.

Good Luck!


RE: What went wrong?

I did read up on how to take and prepare cuttings before I started so I think that was all ok. I do believe now that the misting was the problem so will try a new batch and leave them alone in their little chamber for a while. Thanks to both of you and thanks Janie, for the artemisia tip.

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