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How to Propagate Croton in 2 Easy Ways

If you’re interested in knowing how to propagate croton, then you must be a lover of leaves that are splashed with vibrant shades of purple, orange, red, yellow, green. Croton or Codiaeum variegatum can easily add life to any space.

In most climates, this magnificent plant is grown indoors. However, in areas where the weather is frost-free, croton tends to thrive well in the outdoors. If there’s one thing you need to know about croton, it’s the fact that you can easily propagate it through the process of air layering or air layering.

How to Propagate Croton in 2 Easy Ways

A Few Basic Facts About Crotons

Since crotons are tropical plants, they require moist soil that easily drains and is rich in humus. Furthermore, these plants need extra moisture during the winter season that’s why it’s best to set their pots or containers on pebble trays. Although their growth rate slows during their winter resting period, they’re capable of adapting to lower levels of humidity.

If you want these plants to maintain their stunning colors, be sure to expose them to plenty of bright light all-year-round.  However, be sure to avoid exposing them to too much sunlight unless you want to end up bleaching the colors of your croton leaves. Consider placing them in light shade outdoors or next to a picture window that faces south during the winter season.

 

How to Multiply Crotons Through Stem Cutting

With the right growing conditions, a croton plant can grow as tall as 12 feet with leaves that could spread up to 6 feet. Check out this step-by-step guide to multiplying crotons through stem cutting.

 

Step #1: Do the cutting below a growth nodule

In order to do this, you must take about 4 to 6 inches from the tips. However, you need to look for a growth nodule and do the cutting below it. When you’re stripping the stems off, be sure to leave about three to five top leaves.

 

Step #2: Dry out the sap

You can choose to lay the cutting on a newspaper to dry out the sap. Tapping the cutting in powdered charcoal is also acceptable.

 

Step #3: Plant it in the right kind of soil

It’s extremely important to use perlite and peat moss or river sand when you’re planting your cutting. In case you’re wondering, peat moss or sphagnum moss is a type of organic matter that’s partially decomposed and harvested from wetlands that are acidic. On the other hand, perlite refers to the processed volcanic material that’s mixed with soil to change the soil substructure, enhance aeration, and prevent compaction.

 

Step #4: Tie a plastic bag around the pot

Once your cutting is planted, grab a large plastic bag and tie it around your container or pot to maintain its warmth and moisture. You can expect your cutting to root within a month if the temperature is maintained above 70˚F.

 

How to Grow Crotons Through Air Layering

This technique involves taking a branch that’s exposed to indirect sunlight. Keep in mind that the stem would have to be rooted while it’s being attached to the plant. Check out this guide to propagating crotons through air layering.

 

Step #1: Cut a limb diagonally and hold it open

Again, be sure to make a diagonal cut through a limb below a growth node. You need to make a diagonal cut through the stem up to approximately one-half of its diameter. The cut has to be kept open with a wooden toothpick that’s inserted sideways in it.

 

Step #2: Apply some rooting hormone powder

Next, use a small brush to apply some rooting hormone powder on the wound of the stem.

 

Step #3: Use sphagnum moss to cover the cut

Once you’ve applied the rooting hormone, you’ll need to keep the cut area covered with damp sphagnum moss. You can keep the area moist if you wrap this with polythene and tape it to keep both sides of the wound closed.

 

Step #4: Cut the stems when roots begin to show

As soon as you notice the roots showing against the plastic cover, you need to cut the branch below the layering before you remove the plastic.

 

Step #5: Place your newly rooted branch in peaty loam

After cutting, you may plant your newly rooted branch in a container that’s filled with peaty loam. Expect your cuttings to root within a month if these are kept warm.

 

Can You Grow Crotons in a Hobby Greenhouse?

A hobby greenhouse is an ideal place to grow your gorgeous crotons and other types of tropical plants. Since this enclosed environment allows you to manipulate its internal temperature and humidity levels, your plants can enjoy a stable and consistent tropical weather all-year-round!

This is a perfect option for greens aficionados who live in areas where the climate is mostly cold. Think about having your own personal tropical oasis where you can de-stress, recharge, and rejuvenate – regardless of the weather outside!

Aside from protecting your plants from harsh weather conditions, a hobby greenhouse can also act as a protective barrier against seasonal pests and destructive animals that can potentially cause irreversible damage to your tender plants.

 

Learn How to Propagate Croton in a Hobby Greenhouse!

Now that you know how to propagate croton try doing it in your very own hobby greenhouse! Discover why setting up your own hobby greenhouse is worth the investment.

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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