PROPAGATION

Propagation is the use of seeds or other parts of living plants to produce more of the same. This is not only economical, but it also gives you a real sense of achievement. You can propagate your own plants from seeds or cuttings, or by layering, division, or grafting. In these ways, you can take advantage of what you have already grown to create additions to your original stock.
Seeds Growing new plants from seeds is the most common method of propagating a large number of plants quickly. The timing for collecting seeds is critical. Too late and the seeds will have dispersed, too early and they will not germinate at all. If damp, leave them in the sun to dry thoroughly; if you are not sowing them immediately, store them in a cool, dry place until needed.
Cuttings Increasing your stock of plants by taking cuttings from their stems is a common way to propagate woody plants. Stem cuttings can be subdivided into three categories: softwood—which is taken from shoots ol the current season’s growth (spring and early summer); semi-ripe—taken from shoots oi the current season’s growth as soon as the base o( ;i shoot has turned woody (late summer and autumn); hardwood—prepared from the Current seasons growth once the leaves lave fallen off (late autumn and early winter). Only take cuttings from a healthy plant, discarding any thin and weak shoots. For best results, choose non-flowering shoots as these will root more readily. I lowever, if only I lowering shoots are available, remove the flowers when preparing the cuttings.
Bulbs
Bulbs can be grown from seed success! dully. although for some it can take up to seven years before the seedlings will flower. For this reason, it is preferable to use the propagation methods of scaling and scoring bulbs to get results quickly. Bulbs such as lilies can be scaled, which involves breaking their small, narrow scales away from the base of the parent bulb to plant as single new bulbs that will
grow the same year. Bulbs such as hyacinths should be scored, which involves taking the parent bulbs from their pots in early autumn, cutting grooves in the base with a knife, and then planting them in compost. Bulblets will form and be ready for planting out by the following Fall. Both methods are carried out under glass or clear plastic and produce flowers that can be identical to the parent plant.

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