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How to take geranium cuttings

Overview

Bedding geraniums are actually members of the genus Pelargonium. Many varieties of pelargonium are used as bedding or house plants.

Unlike most annual bedding plants, geraniums are easily propagated by cuttings, so you don't have to fork out for more plants the following summer. Kept on a warm windowsill over winter, your cuttings will quickly develop roots and leaves. They'll be ready to plant out in spring, and will flower all summer.


How to do it

Taking geranium cuttings

1

Select healthy, squat and fat shoots. Remove them from the parent plant by cutting immediately above a bud.


Removing flower buds from the cuttings

2

Remove flower buds and lower leaves from the bottom half of each cutting and cut the stem just below a node, where there is a concentration of the plant's own hormones.


Dipping the cutting in growth hormone

3

To improve success rates, dip the base of each cutting in a small amount of rooting hormone to stimulate root growth.


Inserting the cuttings in compost

4

Fill pots with seed compost mixed with sharp sand to aid drainage. Insert two or three cuttings around the edge of each pot. Water the compost and stand pots in a well-lit position, indoors. Do not cover the pots, as this can encourage mildew to develop on the leaves.


Rooted geranium cuttings

5

After a few weeks, a corky callus will develop over the cut end of the stem and roots will begin to grow. A good root system will have developed within six to eight weeks.


Potted geranium cuttings

6

In March or April, knock each cutting out of the pot and transplant into individual pots of multi-purpose compost. Keep well-watered and plant out in spring, after all risk of frost has passed.


Adam's tip

Stand cuttings on an east- or west-facing windowsill, as they need a good source of light but not direct sun.

Water sparingly if the compost feels dry, but don't overwater. Remove flower buds and brown leaves.

Remove black or wilted cuttings as these may harbour a disease, which could spread to other plants.




Discuss this project

Talkback: How to take geranium cuttings
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Gran's_garden 24/11/2011 at 15:29

I found this very helpful. I will try to do this later on today and I look forward to having the new plants next spring.

Gilda Foster 14/03/2012 at 16:08

If I take pelargonium cuttings now will I get useable plants for this coming season?

JennB 17/04/2012 at 16:00

I would like to know how to take cuttings from my rose leafed geranium which I have as an indoor plant please? Is it the same as for the outdoor pelargoniums?

Emma Crawforth 17/04/2012 at 17:27

Hello JennB,

Have a go at using this house plant cuttings method. It's very easy to do and has worked well for me.

Emma

gardenersworld.com team

Rob Stevens 19/04/2012 at 11:51

I'm curious about the bit that says to put the cuttings around the edge of the pot. Why is this? I've also heard (or read - can't remember where) that this doesn't matter any more when using modern pots? Something to do with the materials used to make them.

Can anyone shed any light on this?

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