Updated at: 29-05-2022 - By: Sienna Lewis

Using cuttings, you can learn how to clone a coleus plant. Using a cloning machine to ensure a 100% success rate on your cuttings might make the process even simpler. Regardless of whether or not you use a device, you may also discover that using a greenhouse is useful since you avoid the changeable external circumstances that might impair the growth of cuttings.

As a reassurance, the University of California has classified coleus as a simple to grow plant. Cuttings are the most effective method of propagation for these plants. If you want to ensure that your coleus plants have clones, even if you’re a rookie, you may feel assured about your cutting propagation talents.

How To Clone A Coleus Plant Easily

Propagating coleus plants from cuttings

We all know that cuttings are the best method for ensuring the parent plant’s copies when compared to growing plants from seeds. The best technique to obtain clones of coleus is to take cuttings, which can be propagated from either seeds or cuttings. All you’ll need is a sterilized and sharp cutting tool, water, a container, and rooting hormone to complete the process in three simple steps.

How To Clone A Coleus Plant In 3 Steps - Krostrade

Collecting stem cuttings

A single coleus plant can provide a large number of stem cuttings, making it an inexpensive and time-saving method of cloning. Grow parent plants for propagation in a greenhouse to ensure they are disease-free and healthy, which gives you a head start. Choosing parent plants is easier if you look for ones with a lot of stems that branch off from the main ones.

This manner, you can be sure that the plants will be able to withstand the removal and that the operation will be less arduous. If your parent plant had a stem or bud, remove around two to six inches of stem below the node. When cutting branches, make sure they have buds at the end of them.

A bushy coleus plant is the result of using apical stems. Additionally, cutting below a node will aid in the propagation and subsequent rooting process. The longer the stem, the more stable the plant will be when it’s time to put it in the ground.

Preparing cuttings

Preparing the cuttings for planting is the next stage. Remove the lowest portion of the leaves by trimming them. Petioles and stipules will be among the leaves you remove, leaving only the highest leaves.

Instead of chopping them off, some gardeners pinch the leaves with their fingers. In order to prevent any of the leaves below the surface from being drowned, remove all except the very uppermost ones. Rooting hormone powder can be applied to the ends of the leaves after they have been removed.

Coleus cuttings are amazing because they can root without the use of rooting hormones. Most gardeners reported that cuttings quickly develop roots after being placed in a wet medium such as potting soil or vermiculite. In a greenhouse, you can also maintain a high humidity level to promote faster rooting.

Using a rooting hormone necessitates the usage of gloves, a mask, and a clean container. Before putting the cutting into the powder, you usually need to soak it in water. You’ll be ready to plant after removing the extra.


The final step before transplanting the cuttings is to cultivate them so that they have roots. To root coleus stems, just place them in water-filled pots and place them in a dark, shady area. One cutting or more can be placed in a container at a time.

Submerge only the nodes, not the upper leaves, as the only issue. Rather than waiting for the cuttings to root in water, some gardeners plant them right away in a container of light, wet potting mix. The cuttings must be kept moist in order to thrive.

After a week, if you are satisfied with the number and thickness of the roots, you should be able to transfer them. Use a fertile, loose-textured potting soil in either the greenhouse or the outdoors. Transplanting in a greenhouse is the best option for those who wish to avoid the risk of frost while still maintaining output.

4 Easy Steps to Grow Coleus From Stem Cuttings

Coleus is a simple plant to grow. You only need:

  • Your fingernails, a knife, or a pair of gardening shears
  • a compact jar of some sort
  • Water

Rooting hormone is helpful, but you don’t necessarily need it to get started. When it comes to cuttings, Coleus is one of those plants that thrives.

4 Easy Steps to Grow Coleus From Stem Cuttings - Dengarden

1. Find an Apical Stem on a Mature Coleus Plant

The end of an apical stem bears a bud. Coleus cuttings can be taken from a long apical stem, like this one: The length of your cut should be between two and six inches.

When it comes to taking cuttings, I want large, mature plants with several stems that branch out from the main stem. Cuttings from mature plants are the best since they have a greater variety of sturdy stems, and because they will not look scraggly if some of their stems are removed. Removing the plant’s apical stems will also result in a more dense, bushy appearance, which most gardeners prefer.

2. Cut off a 2 to 6-Inch Apical Stem Below a Node

After locating the coleus’ apical stem, cut it off at the node (where a stem or bud is located) of the plant.

Nodes can be seen all the way up and down the stems of Coleus plants. Petioles (leaf stems) may be developing from some or all of them. Others will be represented by lines and feel like bumps on the stalk when they first arrive. Make sure you cut below at least one node on the stem. All of the nodes will grow roots if propagation is effective.

The length of the cutting should be between 2 and 6 inches, so that it can stand upright in water.

3. Remove the Lower Leaves From the Stem

Petioles, the short stems of the leaves, and the minuscule leaf structures that develop between the petioles and the main stem of the coleus are both present on the stem (stipules). Only the highest leaves should be left behind.

Pinch off the stem’s lower leaves with your fingers after you’ve plucked a 2- to 6-inch apical stem from the parent plant. Garden shears or a knife might work, but they aren’t necessary. Petioles, the short stems that connect the coleus leaves to the stem, make it simple to remove the leaves. The petiole (short leaf stem) and main stem of Coleus are often joined by a cluster of little leaves. They’re called stipules, and they’re found on the underside of the leaves. Also, take a pair of tweezers to those.

4. Place the Cuttings in Water

To root a cutting, remove the bottom leaves (petioles and stipules) and place it in a container of water with or without rooting hormone.

Each cutting can be stored in a separate container, or all of them can be kept together in one. Make sure that the water is deep enough to cover the nodes, but not so deep that the upper leaves are submerged, whichever option you choose.

It’s also possible to plant your cuttings right away, without waiting for roots to form, by poking small holes in a container of damp, light potting mix.

To be honest, I’d rather use water than potting mix, just because it’s so effective and easy to utilize. I don’t have to moisten the soil or worry about the potting medium being too wet or too dry when I root coleus in water. Checking to see if the nodes are still submerged every two or three days is all I do to keep them that way. It’s a cinch to do!

The cuttings will have roots after a week. Cuttings can be planted outside when the stems have a dense layer of roots.

Read How to Care for the Coleus Plant for further information on the next steps, planting and caring for the coleus plant.

Questions & Answers

I used a pair of scissors to remove the leaves from three Coleus stems and placed them in a plastic bottle of water. All of them performed well and sprouted white roots that were about 4 inches in length.. I decided to use Miracle Grow Garden Soil to grow them in pots. As soon as I had them all organized, I filled the pots with water and waited. They appeared droopy the next day. I hypothesized that shock transplantation might be an option. All three had died by the time I returned the next day. Is there an explanation for this?

Is there direct sunlight shining on the plants? They probably died because of you. Make sure they’re ready for the outdoors by letting them spend some time outside in the shade for a few hours each day for a few weeks, increasing the amount of time each day.

My question is: I recently purchased a coleus plant at the nursery. The plant had been kept in full sunlight by the caretakers. It was vibrant and gorgeous when I first saw it, but it has since faded and dulled. Color has vanished and the plant appears boring despite the fact that it has begun to grow again. What’s wrong with me?

It’s possible that your plant needs fertilizer. A single application of 10-10-10 once a month should suffice.

The lowest leaves of coleus plants were pulled off of cuttings I collected a few weeks ago. Because they were so stunning, I put them in a cup with some water so that I could savor them for a little longer. I was shocked to discover that those leaves had sprouted roots. If I planted the leaves, will a new plant emerge from the roots?

Answer: Yes! Leaf cutting is a typical method of propagation.

I clipped two Coleus stems from a separate plant and threw them into a pot of moist soil to see how they would do. Yesterday was the day. They’re both drooping and sporting flimsy leaves as of late. Is it possible that the soil in the garden has too much material in it?

Using rooting hormone on the cuttings will increase your chances of success. Place them away from direct sunshine in wet, but not saturated, soil.

Here’s another one for you: In order to learn how to grow roses from the stem, I was shown how to plant them in potatoes. They claimed that honey and cinnamon might be used as a substitute for rooting hormone. Do you have any thoughts on this? If you have five-gallon bucket, you can grow potatoes. At first, they sprouted profusely and developed lengthy stems, but eventually, they withered and died. Are there any other possibilities that come to mind?

When Should I Plant Coleus From Seed? Does Variety Matter?

As a greeting, I’d want to introduce myself. According to what I’ve read, honey can be utilized as a rooting agent. An experiment by the Hawaiian MGs, on the other hand, found that rooting was more effective.

A friend told me how to raise roses from cuttings in half-soda bottles with plastic bottle “cloches” on top. It doesn’t require any rooting powder or honey. If you’re interested, you may definitely find more information on the method online.

However, I have no knowledge with growing potatoes in buckets, so I can’t comment on that aspect.

Do you have any suggestions for keeping the roots and stems of coleus free of white mold?

Answer: Thinning the plants is one way to reduce or prevent it. As a result, the amount of moisture in the air will be reduced.

I’m from Mississippi, and I’ve successfully rooted numerous coleus plants. To plant in the spring, how do I keep them during the winter? No, they can’t be grown indoors.

To that question: Yes, it is possible to pot up coleus and keep them inside year round. They grow well indoors. Consider placing them in an area with indirect sunlight.

How long can I keep my coelus plant in a water bottle before it needs to be transplanted?

Is this possible? The answer is yes. To keep the water clear, you may want to add a small amount of charcoal. Coleus plants benefit from the use of a water-soluble fertilizer, like Knox gelatin.

Since my French Quarter coleus has done so well this year, I’ve decided to propagate it myself. So, what should I do with the remaining parts of the plant now? Is it okay if I let my coleus wither in the cold?

Plants can be killed by frost or brought indoors to be grown as a houseplant.


Plants can be easily multiplied through the process of propagation. In order to clone coleus plants, you can use a cloning machine for cuttings, although the old method also works well. Propagating these plants from cuttings should be a breeze, as they are generally easy to grow and require little attention.

Using a healthy parent plant, cut a 6-inch stem from the base of a node. Rooting powder isn’t necessary for Coleus, but it’s always a good idea to have some on hand for your own peace of mind. Transferring the cuttings to a water-filled container is the next step. Make certain that the nodes, but not the top leaves, are completely submerged in the water.

To minimize the hazards of a changing climate, you can also utilize a greenhouse to transplant or grow the parent plants. Using cuttings to propagate a coleus plant is a simple and straightforward method of cloning.