How to Take Dracaena Cuttings

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Lucky bamboo is a popular Dracaena.
Lucky bamboo is a popular Dracaena. (Image: lucky bamboo close up image by Trevor Goodwin from Fotolia.com)

Dracaena are popular foliage plants raised both indoors and out. Most are native to Africa although a few come from Asia and one from Central America. Corn plants and lucky bamboos are both Dracaenas. There are two groupings of Dracaena: dragon trees, which are much taller with stiff leaves and woody trunks; and shrubby Dracaena, which are smaller with flexible leaves and smaller stems. Shrubby Dracaena are common as houseplants. They are relatively easy to grow and propagate as long as they are kept out of direct sunlight and are kept moist.

Things You'll Need

  • 4-inch pots
  • Potting soil
  • Perlite
  • Sharp scissors, secateurs or knife
  • Rooting hormone
  • Small plastic bags
  • Misting bottle

Water your plant well several hours prior to taking a cutting.

A well-hydrated plant gives healthy cuttings.
A well-hydrated plant gives healthy cuttings. (Image: watering can image by aliengel from Fotolia.com)

Prepare 4-inch pots with light soil. Mix regular potting soil/compost with a generous amount of perlite and fill pots.

(Image: leaf and very small plant pot image by Steve Johnson from Fotolia.com)

Press holes in the soil using your thumb.

Water the soil thoroughly and let the excess drain out the bottom. The soil should remain very moist.

Select a healthy stem from the top of the plant and remove the leaves.

Cut the stem cleanly, without crushing or tearing, about 1 cm above the stem node, which is where leaves attach to the stem.

Stem node with leaves.
Stem node with leaves. (Image: bamboo image by Alice Becet from Fotolia.com)

Dip the base in rooting hormone. Be careful to remember which side is down. Ensure the base is covered with the rooting hormone powder and that it does not dislodge when you put the cutting in the soil.

Repeat with multiple cuttings.

Dracaena are often planted in decorative groupings.
Dracaena are often planted in decorative groupings. (Image: lucky bamboo batch image by Aleksej Kostin from Fotolia.com)

Tuck the cutting gently into the indentations in the soil and pack soil lightly around the stem so that it stands firmly.

Place a plastic bag over the pot to form a small greenhouse and mist the cuttings frequently. It may take weeks or months for the cutting to form roots.

Tips & Warnings

  • The greatest danger is that your cuttings will dry out. As the cuttings have no roots they need to absorb moisture through the stem. Keep the soil moist and mist often.

References

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