How To Propagate Poinsettias. 2 Best Ways

You can learn how to propagate poinsettias via seeds and cuttings. And like other plants, you may find it beneficial to start these plants in the greenhouse. This way, you can assure that the young plants will develop without drawbacks due to the consistent indoor conditions. 

More so, growing in the greenhouse guarantees quality poinsettias. Learning how to propagate and maintain poinsettias is generally easy, so why not create more plants and enjoy these flowers’ various colors? Gone are the days where you have to buy these flowers because it’s possible to enjoy them in different seasons, not limited to the holidays. 

 

How To Propagate Poinsettias. 2 Best Ways

Comprehensive Guide On How To Propagate Poinsettias

 

Seeds

While it’s not as expected, you can start poinsettias from seeds. The process can be a tad intimidating for some, but a proper understanding of the methods should help you successfully root these plants. More so, you can pollinate them yourself so you can plan when to collect seeds. 

 

Step #1. Seed collection

You can buy poinsettia seeds, but you can also collect ones from your existing plants. Be on the lookout for the seed pods on the stalks of your flowers when poinsettias start to fade. These pods start green, and you can start collecting them once they turn brown. 

Much like with other seeds, you want to dry them first in a paper bag. Put the closed bag somewhere dry, and you can start collecting the seeds after some weeks. Most of the time, you don’t need tools to pop the pods open, and you can just use your hands. 

However, do note that poinsettia seeds require procedures for them to germinate. If you’re familiar with seed stratification, this is a process that you need to do on the seeds to break dormancy. Place them in the refrigerator for about three months, and you should be ready to plant. 

 

Step #2. Planting

After stratification, you’ll notice how easier it’ll be to pop the pods and remove the seeds. There no unique methods for sowing poinsettia seeds. However, you’ll have an easier time growing them in the greenhouse because the indoor conditions doesn’t fluctuate. 

Sow the seeds below the soil around 1.5 inches and maintain the moisture. You can use one poinsettia seed per pot.  Place them somewhere warm but not receiving direct sunlight, and the seedlings should appear at two weeks. 

 

Cuttings

Perhaps the more convenient way for some gardeners to propagate poinsettias is by using cuttings. Growing poinsettias from cuttings is a quicker way to create copies of plants. This process doesn’t require any preparatory procedures and will guarantee clones of the parent plant you choose. 

 

Step #1. Prepare cuttings

As with other plants, you want to use a healthy parent plant as the source. Make sure that it is free of any diseases, including the stem you’ll cut. A 6-inch cutting should suffice, and you can do this early in the summer when you notice new growths on the plants. 

Prepare the cuttings by removing the lower leaves but leaving those at the top. Dip each cutting in rooting hormone to help with establishment. For the medium, you can use any sterile potting mix and insert the cutting in it. 

 

Step #2. Planting

You can also use the greenhouse for rooting cuttings because it’s easier to manage the indoor conditions. The key to further help with rooting is to cover the container with a plastic bag without it touching the cutting. This will create a humid environment and makes the moisture easier to maintain. 

Place the cuttings somewhere warm but out of direct sunlight. Each day, check the cuttings if the medium needs watering. Over time, you can decide if you want to transplant the cuttings outdoors. 

You can also keep them in the greenhouse for some time if your outdoor conditions are still not ideal. For outdoors, you can transplant the cuttings in the fall. Make sure you acclimate them first to prevent transplant stress. 

Any extreme temperatures will be detrimental to poinsettias that are just establishing themselves. 

 

Watering And Fertilizing Poinsettias

Like with other plants, maintain soil moisture but without risking overwatering your poinsettias. You can water when the surface feels dry, but don’t wait too long because the plants can wilt.

For the fertilizer, you can start feeding poinsettias when they show new stems and leaves. An all-purpose fertilizer would be enough, but make sure to dilute it. Fertilizing every four weeks is ideal for maintenance and plant health. 

 

Conclusion

It’s no secret that seeing poinsettias brings anybody in the holiday spirit. But regardless of the season, learning how to propagate poinsettias can be a useful skill to create more beautiful flowers for your garden. You can sow them from seeds or use cuttings from an existing poinsettia plant. 

When growing poinsettias from seeds, you can buy or collect some from your plants when their flowers fade. Store the pods for drying and stratify them to guarantee germination. On the other hand, taking cuttings is straightforward. 

Select a healthy parent plant and cut around 6 inches of stem. Remove the lower leaves and dip the cutting in a rooting hormone before planting. Cover the pot with plastic bag to create a humid environment.

In both methods, you can use a greenhouse to guarantee establishment. Poinsettias are sensitive to freezing temperatures, so make sure to check your calendar before transplanting outdoors. 

 

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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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