Some plants are easy to propagate by simply putting the stems in water, but other plants will rot if you try rooting them in water, they need a more controlled environment to root.
There are many different types and styles of propagation boxes, some are very fancy (and expensive) and others are not so fancy, but cheap (or free!). I made my own propagation boxes with materials that I got for free, and they work great.
It's very easy to make your own propagation box using an inexpensive clear plastic storage bin with a lid. All you have to do is add a 3-4 inch layer of rooting medium on the bottom of the box and you have everything you need to start using it. For the medium, I use a mixture of 1/2 peat and 1/2 perlite.
|Rooting medium in propagation box|
|Rooted cuttings in propagation box|
There are many different types of plants that are easy to root using a propagation box.
I use it for everything except for plants that are easy to root in water, and succulents (the boxes tend to be too humid for succulents).
I mainly use mine for propagating houseplants, but it could be used for perennials too.
Here are some tips for success with a propagation box...
- Dip the stem of the cutting in rooting hormone before sticking it into the rooting mixture.
- Keep the rooting medium moist, but not saturated and don't allow it to dry out completely.
- If you added too much water, you can leave the lid off the box for a day or two to allow the excess water to evaporate.
- Keep the box out of directly sunlight. An area near a sunny window is the perfect spot inside the house; outside the house, it should be kept in the shade.
- Use bottom heat to help facilitate the rooting process. In the winter, I place my propagation boxes near a heat vent.
- If the storage bin is air tight, add a few ventilation holes in the lid.