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Artificial asexual propagation in plants

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Asexual propagation is the best way to maintain some species, particularly an individual that best represents that species. Clones are groups of plants that are identical to their one parent and that can only be propagated asexually. The Bartlett pear and the Delicious apple are two examples of clones that have been asexually propagated for many years.

Cuttings involve rooting a severed piece of the parent plant; layering involves rooting a part of the parent and then severing it; and budding and grafting are joining two plant parts from different varieties.

The potting soil, or medium in which a plant grows, must be of good quality. It should be porous for root aeration and drainage, but also capable of water and nutrient retention. In order for a plant to form a new root system, it must have a ready moisture supply at the cut surface. Oxygen, of course, is required for all living cells. The coarse-textured media choices often meet these requirements. Most commercially prepared mixes are termed artificial, which means they contain no soil.

The basic ingredients of such a mix are sphagnum peat moss and vermiculite, both of which are generally free of diseases, weed seeds, and insects. Rooting media for asexual propagation should be clean and sterile. Cuttings are not susceptible to damping-off, but they are attacked by other fungi and bacteria which may come along in the medium. Most commercially prepared media are clean when purchased.

The media should be low in fertilizer. Excessive fertility will damage or inhibit new roots. High-quality artificial mixes sometimes contain slow-release fertilizers. Coarse perlite alone can be used to start some cuttings. This doesn't hold much Artificial asexual propagation in plants for long, but it is fine for rooting cuttings of cactus-type plants which would ordinarily rot in higher moisture media. Coarse vermiculite alone has excellent water-holding capacity and aeration, but may dry out rapidly via evaporation if not covered in some way.

An equal mix of peat moss, vermiculite, and perlite is also good and favors moisture retention. Plain water can be used to propagate some cuttings. This is possible and actually works quite well for Artificial asexual propagation in plants species which root easily.

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It certainly provides the needed moisture, but if the water is not changed on a weekly Artificial asexual propagation in plants, it will become stagnant, oxygen deficient, and inhibitory to "Artificial asexual propagation in plants." So, it is not the most desirable methodfor most plants, but certainly feasible.

Once you've selected the right medium, your first priority is to get roots produced as quickly as possible. The consequences of slow rooting may be death because the cutting must rely on its limited water reserves. Water is required for major chemical reactions in plants which will be shut down in its absence. Even though the exposed cells on the cut surface of the cutting ordinarily transport water throughout the plant, they are not equipped to adequately absorb it from the medium.

This can only be done in most plants by roots, and particularly root hairs.

Natural methods of asexual reproduction...

Root hairs are tiny, single cell projections from the root ends or tips. Make sure the medium is moist prior to inserting cuttings. If incompletely moist, then the cut surface may contact a dry pocket and have its own water absorbed away by the medium component.

Try to keep both the air and medium temperature warm: Higher temperatures enhance growth, but excessively high temperatures do not allow for photosynthesis to keep up with food breakdown in normal cell energy use respiration. You can buy Artificial asexual propagation in plants heating pads to put beneath containers holding cuttings to maintain a constant temperature.

Get air circulation around the cuttings as much as possible to discourage fungal growth. Place in bright, but not direct light. An east window is Artificial asexual propagation in plants but a west window is too warm and a south facing window too bright.

North is too dim. One way to provide good environmental conditions for asexual propagation by cuttings is through the use of a mist bed. This system sprays a fine mist of water over the cuttings once every few minutes, and the time is adjustable.

It should only be on during the day, as nighttime operation would keep the medium too wet and encourage rotting.

Misting inhibits transpiration and forces the plant to conserve water while it forms new roots. If a mist system is unavailable, one can be imitated in a small propagation tray in the home. Choose an appropriate medium, moisten it, and place it in a tray.

Place the tray in a perforated or slitted clear plastic bag. This increases the relative humidity and inhibits water loss by the plant and medium, yet allows air circulation. Tug gently at the cuttings after weeks to test for rooting and transplant to individual pots when roots resist your tugs. Dig them out, do not pull them out! Different plants require different rooting times, so do not expect them all to root at the same time.

Many types of plants, both woody and herbaceous, are frequently propagated by cuttings. A cutting is a vegetative plant part which is severed from the parent plant in order to regenerate Artificial asexual propagation in plants, thereby forming a whole new plant. Take cuttings with a sharp blade to reduce injury to the parent plant. Dip the cutting tool in rubbing alcohol Artificial asexual propagation in plants a mixture of one part bleach to nine parts water to prevent transmitting diseases from infected plant parts to healthy ones.

Remove flowers and flower buds to allow the cutting to use its energy and stored carbohydrates for root and shoot formation rather than fruit and seed production. With large-leaved cuttings i. To hasten rooting, increase the number of roots, or to obtain uniform rooting except on soft, fleshy stemsuse a rooting hormone, preferably one containing a fungicide.

Prevent possible contamination of the entire supply of rooting hormone by putting some hormone in a separate container for dipping cuttings. Discard this hormone after all the cuttings are treated. Place stem and leaf cuttings in bright, indirect light.

Root cuttings can be kept in the dark until new shoots appear. Numerous plant species are propagated by stem cuttings.

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