How to Use a Rooter for Plants


A plant rooter (also known as rooting hormone) is used when propagating cuttings to produce new plants. It is a plant hormone that will cause the cutting to create new roots at a faster rate than it would on its own. Not all species require the use of a plant rooter, but it can be a helpful tool. The most common version available to homeowners is a powder, while commercial companies and researchers usually use a liquid form.

Step 1

Pour some of the plant rooter into a small container. As the Ohio State University Extension Service points out, this will help ensure against the possibility of the whole jar of plant rooter becoming contaminated.

Step 2

Poke a hole in the potting soil with a pencil or stick. This will allow the cutting to be placed into the soil without brushing off the rooter.

Step 3

Strip off the bottom sets of leaves on the stem. Remove any that would be below the soil once planted, as these could rot.

Step 4

Use a garden knife to make a cut about 1/4 inch below a lower leaf joint (called a node).

Step 5

Dip the end of the cutting into the plant rooter. Tap gently on the edge of the container to remove any excess hormone.

Step 6

Place the cutting into the hole, making sure to avoid touching the sides if possible. Gently firm the soil around the stem.

Tips and Warnings

  • Sterilize the garden knife before use to help ensure that no pathogens are transferred to the cutting.

Things You'll Need

  • Plant cuttings (freshly cut)
  • Rooter
  • Small container
  • Pencil or stick
  • Potting soil
  • Germination trays
  • Garden knife


  • Ohio State University Extension - Asexual Propagation of Plants
Keywords: plant rooter, rooting hormone, plant cuttings

About this Author

Marie Notnats enjoys learning about new topics and teaching people new skills. She has been writing professionally since 2008. She is a professional horticulturist with a Bachelor of Science degree in horticulture from Brigham Young University. She writes for,, eHow, and assorted gardening blogs.