Artificial propagation of plants

Written by tiffany bennett
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Artificial propagation of plants
Citrus trees are often artificially propagated. (árbol con limones image by Cristina Bedia from Fotolia.com)

Plants normally reproduce through seeds, spores or reproductive growths such as rhizomes or tubers. However, artificial propagation may present a number of advantages under certain circumstances.

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Advantages

Artificial propagation is often used to reproduce a plant with desirable characteristics, create better plants, hasten fruit production or prevent a species from becoming extinct. Since artificial propagation does not rely on seeds, it allows new plants to be produced quickly.

Cutting

Cutting, a common method of asexual plant reproduction, uses cut section of roots, leaves or stems to produce plants identical to the mother plant. These pieces are usually dipped in root hormone solution and covered halfway with soil. When the cut pieces establish roots, they are separated and repotted.

Grafting

When a plant is grafted, a branch from one tree is joined with the roots of another. The two pieces are cut so they fit together like puzzle pieces, and are then secured until they grow together.

Marcotting

Marcotting involves scraping the bark from a portion of a tree branch and wrapping that section in soil or sphagnum moss. Under the right conditions, the area where the bark was removed will develop roots. Once this occurs, the branch is cut from the mother plant and allowed to grow by itself.

Budding

During the process of budding, a vertical cut is made beneath the bark of a tree's branch. A bud with a thin layer of wood is inserted into the cut and allowed to grow on the new tree.

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