How to take verbena cuttings

Do it:

Jul, Aug, Sep

Takes just:

45 minutes

Summer is the ideal time to take verbena cuttings. Overwinter the semi-hardy perennials in a frost-free place and you'll have a fresh, healthy supply of verbena plants next year to replace any in the garden that have been killed by frost.

You will need

  • Verbena plants
  • Sharp knife
  • 10cm pots
  • Free-draining compost (multi-purpose and perlite mix - see Adam's tip)
  • Rooting hormone (liquid or powder)
  • Clear polythene bags and rubber bands

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Take cuttings in the morning when shoots are at their firmest. Choose non-flowering sideshoots from either side of the main stem.

Trim below a leaf joint to take a cutting about 7.5cm long. Carefully remove lower leaves so that the cutting has a length of bare stem that can be cleanly inserted into the compost.

Dip the cut end of the stem into rooting hormone mixture to encourage root development.

Fill a 7cm pot with gritty compost and insert up to five verbena cuttings into the compost around the edge of the pot. Water well.

Pop the pot inside a clear polythene bag and seal it with a rubber band. Place in a warm bright position, but protect from scorching sunshine. After six weeks, check for signs of white roots growing through the drainage holes in the base of the pot. When these are visible, pot each cutting up separately.

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Pot on cuttings into 7.5cm pots, as these are a more convenient size to overwinter than larger plants and more successful than lifting established plants.

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