How to Propagate a Mimosa Tree

Overview

The mimosa tree is an evergreen shrub that's native to Brazil. It has fern-like leaves that droop or close up when touched and reopen a few minutes later, earning it the name "Sensitive Plant." The mimosa tree can grow up to about five feet in height with a three-foot spread. It has fluffy pink flowers that are ball-shaped and prickly, bristly seed pods that can cling to animal fur and clothing. Propagating mimosa trees is usually done by seed, but it can also be done by cuttings.

Step 1

Harvest the seeds in late summer or early fall, when the flowers begin to wilt. Carefully remove the bristly seed pods from the flowers. Dry and store the seeds until early spring.

Step 2

Place the seeds in a dish and cover them with hot water. Allow them to soak overnight, until they swell. Select the swollen seeds for sowing and re-soak the ones that didn't swell.

Step 3

Fill a two-inch planter pot with equal parts sand and peat moss. Plant three seeds in the pot, inserting the seeds down into the potting mix about two or three times the seeds' thickness.

Step 4

Maintain a temperature of at least 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the pot in bright indirect sunlight and water the seeds just enough to keep the potting mix moistened. The seedlings should begin to germinate within three or four days.

Step 5

Select the strongest seedling after the three seedlings have grown to about four inches tall. Transfer the strongest seedling to a six-inch planter pot.

Propagating from Cuttings

Step 1

Take cuttings in the spring or early summer to propagate your mimosa tree. Cut at an angle a two-inch-long side shoot with a piece of old wood attached (a "heel"). Remove the lower leaves from the cutting, allowing two upper leaves to remain.

Step 2

Insert the severed end of the cutting into a two-inch planter pot filled with moistened peat moss. Place the pot in a plastic bag and tie it at the top.

Step 3

Place the plastic-covered pot in bright indirect sunlight and keep the peat moist. Maintain a temperature of about 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 4

When the roots begin to develop and new growth emerges, remove the plastic bag and transfer the cutting to a six-inch pot filled with one part peat moss and one-part sand.

Tips and Warnings

  • Don't over-water your Mimosa tree seeds and make sure your planter pot has good drainage holes in the bottom. If you keep the humidity and moisture low, you'll avoid fungal problems. When you're handling rooted cuttings or seedlings, be extremely careful not to disturb the roots. Mimosa trees are very sensitive to root disturbances.

Things You'll Need

  • Mimosa tree seeds
  • Small dish
  • 2-inch planter pots
  • Sand
  • Peat moss
  • 6-inch planter pots
  • Sharp knife or pruning shears
  • Mimosa tree cutting
  • Plastic bag

References

  • University of Miami: Mimosa Pudica
  • PlantCare.com: Mimosa, Mimosa Tree

Who Can Help

  • Botany.com: Mimosa -- Sensitive Plant
Keywords: propagate Mimosa tree, start Mimosa tree, Mimosa tree cuttings

About this Author

Sarah Terry brings 10 years of experience writing novels, business-to-business newsletters, and a plethora of how-to articles. Terry has written articles and publications for a wide range of markets and subject matters, including Medicine & Health, Eli Financial, Dartnell Publications and Eli Journals.