Homemade Rooting Compound for Your Cuttings
by Pearl Sanborn
Gardening on a Dime
Gardening for (Almost) Nothing
Gardening Tips from Yesteryear
Although store bought rooting compound doesn't seem to be overly expensive, most folks don't know that it can be toxic due to the fungicide included to protect plant cuttings from disease.
Just as in humans, hormones stimulate various functions in plant growth. The first hormone discovered to cause root growth is called auxin, and the synthetic version of auxin is what we find in commercially sold compounds today.
The willow plant is a natural source of auxin. Therefore, it can be very easy to make up a fresh batch of homemade rooting compound whenever you need to plant some new cuttings.
- Gather a handful of willow branch tips
- Chop or mash into smaller pieces
- Fill small container with pieces
- Fill container with water & allow to sit overnight
- Remove willow pieces
- Dip cutting into the water, covering the stem
- Put cutting into your potting mix (or moist sand)
- Cover with a plastic bag to retain moisture
- After roots form, re-pot
Also, don't get rid of the willow water when you're done with your cuttings. Save it to water your plants!
If you don't have access to willow, dissolve a few aspirins in a jar of water. Aspirin is made from willow bark, so it can have the same effect as the willow water.
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