If coleus (Solenostemon) is not the easiest plant cutting to root, then it must be ranked at the top of the plant propagator’s list right next to the willows. It’s such a great foliage plant why not make more?
How to Propagate Coleus
The procedure is simple, just take a cutting with two leaves and some stem (about 2 inches is good), pinch the terminal growth and put it in water. Now here’s the really important part, the most critical part, you have to wait for roots to grow. That’s it! No rooting hormone is needed. You could get away with sticking the stem in moist potting soil and skip the water treatment altogether but if you’re like me, you will want to see the roots before you plant them!
How Long Does it Take for Cuttings to Root?
Before too long, in less than a week you’ll have roots that look like this, ready for planting. Don’t wait too long to plant them since they will lose their vigor. Notice that the roots are coming from the stem rather than the node.
After rooting you can plant them in pots or out in the garden. Just make sure that you keep them moist until they get well established. Propagating coleus through stem cuttings is a great way to save these extremely tender perennials over the winter. Just take a few cuttings of your favorite coleus plants from your garden and bring them inside. When they root pot them up and put them where they can get adequate light inside your house. As they grow feel free to take more cuttings and add to your coleus collection. Don’t forget to pinch the terminal growth (the little sips at the end of the stems where the new leaves grow from) periodically to keep your coleus from getting too leggy. When spring comes you will have plenty of coleus for your garden.
If you’re looking for something easy to get started in propagating give coleus a try!