Wednesday, February 4, 2009

How to Propagate Poinsettia
By eHow Home & Garden Editor

I Did This

Poinsettias are generally temporary houseplants purchased before the holidays in full bloom and discarded after New Year's Day. They can be kept and induced to bloom again the following winter, but this is a difficult process. An easier method of ensuring a blooming poinsettia for the next holiday season is propagation of the plant. You must take some special steps because of the sticky latex inside the stems.

Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need: Rooting hormone powder

Step1 Keep the plant alive through the winter and into spring - don't let it get too dry. The best time to begin propagation is in the Spring.

Step2 Cut a three- to six-inch section of the stem way from the end of a branch. Remove the bottom set of leaves from the cutting. If you intend to keep the parent plant, mist the area where you took the cutting with water to help prevent excessive sap from leaking out of the plant.

Step3 Dip the tip of the cutting in a jar of water to help prevent sap from leaking out of the stem.

Step4 Fill a three-inch pot with a mixture of sand and perlite. Then add a half inch layer of sand to the top of the mixture. The sand helps prevent the propagation from rotting.

Step5 Add some rooting hormone powder to the tip of the poinsettia cutting and insert it into the potting mixture. Water the propagation well at first. After the first watering, water only when the potting mix dries out. Too much water can cause stem rot.

Step6 Wait about two months for the poinsettia propagation to take root. When new growth appears, treat the poinsettia as a mature plant.

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