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How to Grow a Plant Clipping

By Tracy Morris ; Updated September 21, 2017

There are three good ways of propagating a plant: growing one from seed, grafting a cutting to a different set of roots and starting a plant from a cutting. Starting a plant from a cutting is one of the easiest ways to propagate a hybrid, since grafting plants to root stock can be tricky, and seeds will not reproduce true to type. Plant cuttings produce hearty shoots that have all of the parent plant’s strengths.

Wait until late fall when there are no flowers on the plant that you wish to cut, or select branches from the parent plant that have not produced flowers.

Cut at least 6 to 8 inches from the tip of the branch or cane using a sharp grafting knife. Make your cut at a 45 degree angle just below a plant’s node (the point at which the leaves emerge from the branch).

Strip the leaves from the lower half of the cutting.

Immediately dip the end of the cutting into rooting hormone. Do not let the cutting dry out.

Fill a sterilized potting tray with sterile potting soil.

Insert the cutting into the potting soil so that the stem of the cutting is buried to the halfway point.

Mist the cutting and soil with a plant mister until the soil is moist.

Cover the potting tray with plastic sheeting to keep the moisture in the soil.

Store the plant in a heated room out of direct sunlight

Continue to mist the soil and the cutting to keep the soil damp for two weeks, until the plant has developed roots.

Water the plant from a watering can once it has developed roots.

Remove the sheeting and transplant the plant to a larger container as the roots develop and the plant grows.


Things You Will Need

  • Parent plant
  • Grafting knife
  • Rooting hormone
  • Sterile potting mix
  • Sterilized potting trays
  • Plastic sheeting
  • Plant mister
  • Heated room
  • Watering can


  • If you cannot root your cuttings right away, you can keep them fresh by keeping them in ice chests full of water or wrapping plastic bags around the stems and filling the bags with water.

About the Author


Tracy Morris has been a freelance writer since 2000. She has published novels and numerous online articles. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers including "Ferrets," "CatFancy," "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World." She holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the University of Arkansas.