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Plant Propagation

Plant propagation is not difficult once you understand the basic principle. Propagate your own plants is the best and cheapest way to increase the plant stocks in your garden. It also provides many opportunities for gardeners to exchange plants, thereby increasing the varieties available in cultivation. Propagation techniques range from the simple division of overcrowded perennials to more advanced methods, such as hybridizing in order to create plants with new characteristics, such as novel flower colors. For many gardeners, the transition from a seed into a healthy plant or the development of a cutting into a new tree or shrub is fascinating and offers satisfaction. Successful propagation is well within the reach of any gardener once you learn the basic techniques and practice them. Do not be disappointed if you fail your fist in your first attempts, time and practice will show better results.

Outdoor Nursery Beds

New plants and seedlings in containers can be grown on in an outdoor nursery bed after they have been hardened off. You can arrange this area by covering an area of cleared and levelled ground with water-permeable woven fabric, black polypropylene or weed matting. Any of these will suppress weeds and will provide a clean growing environment isolating the plants placed on its surface from soil-borne diseases.

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Hardening off the Propagated Plants

One of the most important thing you must consider when you propagate plants is that they need to be harden off before they are planted into the garden in their final position. Hardening the plants is the process by which the young plants are acclimatized to the outside air temperatures.

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Storage Organs

Many plants will reproduce themselves by their storage organs. The storage organs very and have diverse structures: bulbs, corms, rhizomes, root and stem tubers and turions. Most of the plants with storage organs will increase naturally by producing offsets. These should be lifted and divided to prevent overcrowding. The advantage of this type of propagation is that offsets will flower more quickly than seed-raised plants and the new plants will be identical with the parent plant, while seed-raised plants may vary in character from the mother plant.

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Caring for the Propagated Plants

When you propagate plants you need to know a few more thinks than just how to prepare the material properly for propagation. You must know how to care for and grow on the young plants in a suitable environment until they are sufficiently developed to thrive in the garden. You must know when is the right time for every operation you must do in order to keep your plantlets healthy. Practical inexperience or carelessness may kill well-rooted plants.

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Advanced Techniques

Many new propagation techniques have been introduced commercially since the mid 20th century. Some of these techniques are generally confined to laboratory nurseries because they are using advanced technologies, but the following developments affect several branches of horticulture and have direct or indirect relevance to gardening.

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Propagation Environment

During propagation, plants are at their most vulnerable period of their existence. The right environment for them during this period is vitally important and depends on which method of propagation is used and also on the relative maturity of the plant material itself.

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Propagation Techniques

In this article we will only enumerate the propagation techniques and some basic information about each of it. More detailed information will be found in the detailed article about each technique.

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