Planting a Garden

Starting Plants from Seeds, Cuttings, Divisions, and Layerings

Growing plants from seeds allows gardeners to save money.
Growing plants from seeds allows gardeners to save money.

Starting your own plants from seeds, cuttings, divisions, and layering saves money and expands options. But be prepared to give propagation a certain amount of attention. Young plants need tender loving care to get them off to a good start.

Many plants grow well from seeds, especially annual flowers, herbs, and vegetables. You can find new, rare, or old-fashioned varieties that aren't available in local nurseries in seed catalogs. Seed sowing allows you to grow a few, dozens, or even hundreds of seedlings from a seed packet that costs a dollar or two. That's economy!

Certain special plants don't grow from seeds. They need to be cloned (vegetatively propagated). This is done by rooting sections of stems, roots, and, in a few cases, leaves. Clump-forming perennial plants can be divided into several pieces. Stems of some kinds of plants can be rooted while still attached to the mother plant. This is called layering. Some plants can be propagated equally well in several ways. For example, lantana can be grown from seed (flower color will vary); started from cuttings, either in soil or in water; or propogated via layering.

Keep reading to learn how to divide perennials.

Looking for more information about gardening? Try these:

  • Gardening: Learn the basics of successful gardening.
  • How to Start a Garden: Even beginning gardeners can get a healthy garden in the ground and growing.
  • Annuals: Plant these beauties in your garden for bountiful blooms all summer.
  • Perennials: Perennial plants grace your garden year after year.