Ask a Question forum: Schefflera propagation

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frankthomas
Nov 25, 2016 7:19 PM CST
This schefflera has a very special story and I want to extend that story. As you can see it is about 10ft tall on a single stem (trunk!). It was given to my late wife Cindy by her first husband upon learning of her pregnancy for their 4th child who is now 34 years old. Cindy and I were married for 15 years before she passed away June of this year.

Fortunately I am very close to my 4 adult step children and I want to do something special for them. I'd like to propagate 4 separate plants from this one if possible to give to them. This plant is so connected to their family and especially their mother. It would be an amazing thing for them to each have the offspring of this plant that she had for almost 35 years.

Can this be done and how? Thank you

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Name: Hetty
Sunny Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
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Dutchlady1
Nov 25, 2016 7:23 PM CST
Welcome! frankthomas.
Where we live (in Southwest Florida) this is a fail safe plant. It is too bad yours is only a single stem because they will easily root in water from stem cuttings. I suggest you start with a 12" or so piece from the top, you may get branching from where you cut so you will have more branches to root later on.

frankthomas
Nov 25, 2016 7:30 PM CST
Thanks Dutchlady. I am in Michigan. But this plant has been invincible. I've only increased the pot size a few times and water it when I remember. It's a tough one.
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Nov 25, 2016 9:20 PM CST
Welcome to NGA from another Michigander, @frankthomas !

I totally agree that these plants are pretty much invincible. I've rooted lots of cuttings from mine, I don't think I've ever had a piece that failed to grow. I think you could easily take 4 cuttings from the top of your big plant -- with each being maybe 8-12 inches long -- remove the lower leaves, stick the cuttings in a jar of water (there shouldn't be any leaves under water, they will likely rot), and you'll soon have 4 new plants that you can put into pots. I would actually cut the very top of the plant off, and then take the 4 cuttings; removing that growing tip will encourage the first cutting to branch; the others should also branch out. Once they get going (it takes a little while, of course), the tips of the growing branches can be clipped off and the plants will become more bushy, instead of being a single stem.

My condolences on the passing of your wife... and I think sharing that plant with your stepchildren is a wonderful idea! Smiling
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frankthomas
Nov 26, 2016 2:01 AM CST
Is this something I could start now or should I wait till Spring? Also, if I take multiple cuttings, even down past where leaves are branching, will that remaining trunk leaf and continue to grow?
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
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Weedwhacker
Nov 26, 2016 8:30 AM CST
Even though I actually think the "trunk" would send out some branches if you took cuttings all the way past where there are leaves coming off, I would suggest not going down quite that far -- it looks to me like you have plenty of room to get 4 cuttings and still have some leaves on the trunk. I don't think there's any need to wait until spring, either; you should be able to go ahead with it at any time. Use a clean knife or pruners to make the cuts and stick the stems in some water, place in an area that is light but not in direct sunlight, and change the water every few days. If the idea of doing this makes you nervous that you will harm the plant, you could always just do one cutting at a time. Smiling
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Nov 26, 2016 11:36 AM CST
Hello frankthomas, that is one lovely plant. I think you can do a cutting from the top, but if it were mine, I would delay to Spring. Just depends really what your temps and light conditions are during the colder months, even indoors. I find easier rooting in mid Spring.
Name: Christine
Saugerties, NY zone 5a
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Christine
Nov 27, 2016 8:48 AM CST
Welcome! Frank, here's my 2 cents Smiling If you've never made cuttings from a plant before I'd contact my local nursery and see if there is someone there that can come and do it for you, I'd hate to see something happen to your plant. I have never had luck taking cutting from my schefflera and I have alot of plants..
Best of luck with which ever way you decide to go, keep us posted Thumbs up

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