Propagating Leafbud Cuttings
This method is often used to propagate Camellias and some varieties of cactus.
The technique is similar to taking eye cuttings, except that they are taken when the plant is in leaf, and the leaf is left on to give nourishment during the rooting process.
A leaf bud Cutting consists of a single leaf attached to a piece of stem taken from a semi-hardwood stem (1) in mid to late summer.
- Make the first cut just above a bud in a leaf axil (2) and the other 25mm-40mm (1"-1½") below the bud.
The bud, located where the leaf stalk joins the stem (leaf node) will give rise to a new shoot.
- Dip the lower end of the cuttings (3) in hormone rooting powder and insert into a pot filled with gritty compost.
Each bud should be in total contact with the compost and approximately 12mm (½") below the surface (4).
- Place the tray / pot in a warm place, preferably with bottom heat.
A soil temperature of around 16°C (60°F) and a minimum air temperature of 4°C (40°F) is ideal.
- Give the cuttings plenty of light, but ensure that they are not scorched by direct sunlight.
Do not let the compost dry out, regular spraying (misting) with either fresh water or a fungicide mixture will prevent dehydration.
- Pot on into 75 mm (3") pots of potting compost when rooted.
Cactus and Succulents:
This is a suitable method for propagating Schlumbergera (Christmas / Easter Cactus)
- Remove the cutting as described above then allow the cutting to dry for a few days.
The drying period will cause the cut edges to callous.
This will prevent the absorption of excessive amounts of moisture that could result in rotting.
Depending upon species and size, this drying process should take 2-7 days .