Is it normal for coleus cuttings to wilt before roots?

csmooot(9a)July 8, 2013

The Lowes near me has two foot coleus for 4 dollars a piece, so I had to get some! They're all bushy, and I want to grow a few standards, so I took lots of cuttings.

Unfortunately, my sun coleus will wilt within thirty minutes of being removed from the original plant, and will continue to do so. My perilla looks good, just the leaves are somewhat droopy.

The ones that wilted the quickest were those that I put in soil. The next were the ones in perlite, following the one in water. I never had this problem before. Is it because I'm not using root hormone? Then again, last time I had coleus I was in the Chicago area, so it was much more humid. Any help?

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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Yes, I think it is. I always water root mine (it's been a long time) but recall Coleus seems very quick to dry out.

I suspect one need to cover (enclose the whole set up in plastic bag) newly potted Coleus cuttings to keep them moist enough to root.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 6:08PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Your medium needs to be coarse textured and moist. Make your cuttings about five inches or less. Remove the bottom leaves, keeping only the top two or so; pinch off any flowers if present. If those leaves are large, you can snip off half to reduce the surface area.

Pre-drill holes with a pencil or skewer, place the cutting into the hole and water again to force the mix around the stem. No pinching, poking, or tamping with your fingers. Place your cuttings in a shaded location, out of the heat but not in frigid air conditioning. You can certainly cover with plastic to reduce transpirational loss during the rooting period.

Don't pull on the leaves to check on their progress for at least three or four weeks.

If the medium that you are using is overly peaty and dense then you may want to add fifty percent perlite.

I always prefer rooting in a medium of some sort, rather than water.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 6:48PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Your medium needs to be coarse textured and moist. Make your cuttings about five inches or less. Remove the bottom leaves, keeping only the top two or so; pinch off any flowers if present. If those leaves are large, you can snip off half to reduce the surface area.

Pre-drill holes with a pencil or skewer, place the cutting into the hole and water again to force the mix around the stem. No pinching, poking, or tamping with your fingers. Place your cuttings in a shaded location, out of the heat but not in frigid air conditioning. You can certainly cover with plastic to reduce transpirational loss during the rooting period.

Don't pull on the leaves to check on their progress for at least three or four weeks.

If the medium that you are using is overly peaty and dense then you may want to add fifty percent perlite.

I always prefer rooting in a medium of some sort, rather than water.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2013 at 6:52PM
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garyfla_gw(10 Florida)

Hi
naturally they will wilt since there are no roots to transport water to the leaves .. Keep them warm ,shaded and moist and they will recover. Except for philos they are the worlds easiest plant to root.lol. If you want ,you can avoid the wilting by putting a bit of LF sphag where you want it to root . .When roots develop simply snip just below
ready to transplant and the original plant is already on the way to recovery. I don't ever recall having a cutting fail no matter what method was used ?? gary

    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 5:18AM
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birdsnblooms

Morning Everyone,

Cs..I've successfully rooted Coleus in water. No rooting hormone is needed.

What size are stems you're attempting to root? If too long, they'll naturally wilt.

I know you're trying for a standard, 'you'll have to tell me how it's done,' but rooting longer pieces are more difficult.

Stem shouldn't be any larger than 6". Remove lower leaves, then place in room-temp water. Change water every other day.

BTW, except for succulents, I haven't luck rooting in soil, but that's me. Many here haven't any problems rooting in mediums.

Since your Coleus is large, perhaps you should root 2-3 cuttings in soil using rooting hormone, and 2-3 in water.

Good luck, Toni

    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 10:41AM
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teengardener1888(NY Albany 5a)

Pirate, some advice

I always used to use the water method, it is quicker and easier. But I find that if you stick it in potting mix and enclose it is a salad container(clear) it roots and takes off tenfold faster than the water method. Do you plant the roots young or do you let them grow in the water for a long time. I also find that some cultivars simply root better than others in water . I have saved my Inky Fingers cultivar for years and with a near 100 percent cutting survival rate, yet I find that broad leaved cultivars tend to rot easier if rooted in water

    Bookmark   July 9, 2013 at 11:18AM
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