The Q&A Archives: Joseph's Coat Propagation

Question: I have planted green/yellow Joseph's Coat in my garden and I'd love to have more, but hate the expense of buying many new plants each spring. I am noticing little tiny fuzzy beige or yellow "flowers" appearing on the plant where the leaves connect to the stems. Are these seeds? I hope that's not a stupid question, but they are SO tiny that I was not sure. If they are seeds, do I need to let them mature on the plant & how should they be stored for spring planting?

Answer: Alternanthera ficoidea, or Joseph's Coat, is considered a foliage plant for both indoor and outdoor growing. In fact, the variegated leaves are the most outstanding characteristic of this plant. Keep the soil moderately moist and the temperatures between 60 and 85 degrees for best show. Pinching will keep the plant short and bushy. Rather than rely on seeds, take tip cuttings, which root quickly in plain water. If you do so now, you can start cuttings indoors and pot them up to grow indoors all winter long, then transplant the rooted cuttings into the garden next spring.

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