Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Unusual Houseplants from Cuttings

Fuchsia 'Autumnale' rooted easily from cuttings.
Beneath the carefully-blended soil, roots of the plants I've saved for the winter are taking hold. I can tell this by their leaves, which plump up. Eventually, tiny new leaves will sprout from their stems.
Hemigraphis 'Exotica' or purple waffle plant.
We haven't had a killing frost yet. At least not one severe enough to banish the banana or kill off the Colocasia. Truthfully, things aren't looking that great as a whole, but taken a bit at a time, it's really not bad.

Phygelius 'Winchester Fanfare' was very easy to root.
Inside, nearly all of my cuttings have rooted. All that's left is to keep them thriving for the next five months, and I'll have a jump on next season. The plants I'm really excited about growing in the winter are the tropicals like Pandorea jasminoides variegata and Phygelius ‘Winchester Fanfare’. 

Pandorea, or variegated bower vine takes
longer to form roots.
The Phygelius (Cape fuchsia) bloomed quite well through the summer, luring the hummingbird away from the other goodies I had planted. Even now, the cutting shows no signs of being slowed by its flowers. I removed them, though, to make it easier on the plant as I preferred its energy be devoted to forming roots.

The Pandorea (bower vine) didn't get around to blooming this year, although it was attractive anyway with its variegated foliage. I'm hoping to give it a big headstart next summer so perhaps this 20 to 30-footer will flower.
Plants rooting under humidity dome.
I start most of my cuttings in small pots placed on some type of tray or plastic storage container that I put  on a heat mat beneath plant lights. To speed things up, I add a lid to keep the humidity in, checking each day to make sure things are going well. Each plant takes a different amount of time to root; the quickest so far have been the Pelargoniums
(annual geraniums), which can usually come out of the humidity tray set-up in less than 10 days.
Pelargonium 'Distinction' is one of several annual geraniums I'll be growing indoors this winter.