Aeonium is a genus of succulent plants native to the Canary Islands. They form rosettes at branch ends that look like large flowers. Most Aeoniums form a small shrub or small tree-like plant, but some do not branch. There are about 35 species, as well as hybrids and cultivars. Aeoniums are hardy in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 9 through 11.
Aeoniums are usually propagated by stem cuttings, except for unbranched species, such as Aeonium tabuliforme, that die after flowering and are propagated from seed.
- Clean the sharp pruning shears by dipping them in rubbing alcohol.
- Decide how long a stem cutting to take. It could be 5 to 6 inches (12.5 to 15 cm) long for tree-like species with bare stems. For small, shrub-like species, it could be 0.5 inches (1.3 cm) or shorter. Cut off the piece of stem containing the leaf rosette.
- Allow the end of the cutting to heal in a shaded place for at least three days, longer if the stem is thick and fleshy.
- Fill a clean container that has drainage holes with a well-draining potting mix. Use a pot just big enough to contain the cutting.
- Put the cutting into the potting mix, burying just enough of it to hold the cutting upright. Put the cutting in bright indirect light, watering it lightly once a week.
- Resume regular watering when the Aeonium develops roots. Water thoroughly and let the top 2 inches (2 cm) of soil dry out before watering again.
- Collect seeds after the Aeonium has finished blooming. Put them in a paper bag and allow them to dry.
- Fill a shallow clean nursery flat with the same potting mix you used for rooting the cuttings.
- Sow the seeds on top of the soil, scattering them evenly. Cover them with twice the thickness of the potting mix. Water the flat well.
- Put the flat in bright indirect light and cover it with plastic wrap. Keep the potting mix moist until germination occurs. Remove the plastic wrap when germination starts.
- Prick out individual seedlings when they have reached 0.5 inches (1.3 cm) in diameter. Give each seedling its own 2-inch (5 cm) pot, transferring it to just the next bigger pot size as the plant grows.
Take cuttings when the plant is actively growing, usually in spring and fall. Aeoniums go dormant in summer. Cuttings taken while plants are dormant do not root.
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