It is with heavy heart that I tell you I am an eejit. I should know better. I thought I’d got away with it.  Such hubris! Such impatience! A serious case of “do as I say, not as I do”. A particularly pointless piece of not practicing what I preach.  All the ‘p’s.

When cuttings have rooted, it is very tempting to tip them out and re-pot.  As I have evangelised before, this is often fatal if done too soon, before the roots have properly established.  One or two weedy roots is not enough – a veritable forest of roots is what you want. If there are not several fronds of roots surging well clear from the bottom of the pot, IT’S TOO SOON!

Very pleased with myself, I ignored all my own advice, not to mention the expert advice upon which mine is based, and potted up some lovely little cuttings. Here they all are looking super duper.


Like some form of propagation Somme, most of these innocent foot soldiers are now dead, thrown into battle by a foolish general.  Poorly equipped for the ravages of, um, the heated bench, a bit of mildew or perhaps botrytis finished them off. I think with a better, more robust set of roots more of them would have survived.

From this batch, all the euphorbia is gone, nearly all the gaura, all but one of the penstemon, most of the lobelia, most of the salvia. All I have to mark their passing is my own little Commonwealth Cemetery, labels the folorn grave markers, albeit considerably less neatly arranged than the real thing.

Suitably chastened, I am leaving my other cuttings well alone in their humid little homes. They all seem happy enough and many have signs of the top growth that tempted me last time around.  I am resisting, I hope to last until the spring.

how to propagate verbena bonariensis by cuttings

Sigh.  I’ll be back soon, hopefully with happier propagation news.