4.01.2014

New roots....

The crown of one of my baby African violets broke off in my hands a couple of weeks ago, and I was horrified. I waited and waited for this baby to grow from a leaf cutting, then carefully tended it. And I broke it.

So to Google I went, looking for the best way to salvage the crown. One gardening website said you could put the crown in water and it would grow roots. Just make a paper collar to support the plant, and make sure to keep the water topped off. This method would also work on leaf cuttings. There's no need to go through the usual process of dipping the leaf stem in rootone, planting it in vermiculite and potting soil, then putting a bag over pot and plant to keep it moist.

I'm willing to try most things once, so I pulled out a beer tasting glass and a couple of shot glasses, cut paper collars, cut an "X" slit in each, and slipped the crown through one and two leaf cuttings through the others, and set the glasses in the kitchen window.




The best thing about this method is that everything is visible. You can see the stem and know immediately when it starts to sprout roots. Just keep the water level near the rim of the glass, and let them be. You don't have to worry whether the leaf is staying moist, or wonder what's going on under the soil. The crown sprouted roots from the original crown. I expected the leaves to form roots just where the leaf and stem joined, but the roots sprouted right where I cut the stem.

Within a couple of weeks the crown was sprouting roots, and within a month, the leaves also had roots. Soon I'll transplant the leaves and crown into pots.

Plus they look really pretty on my windowsill.

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