Leggy Rubber plant - Any tips on air-layering?

Discussion in 'Plant Propagation' started by Cryptanthus84, May 7, 2009.

  1. Cryptanthus84

    Cryptanthus84 Member

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    Location:
    Minnesota, USA
    Local Time:
    12:47 PM
    My indoor rubber plant (Ficus elastica) has gotten 'leggy', having lost most of the leaves halfway down its 5-ft stem. I am considering air-layering the plant. Can I air-layer my rubber plant without using a rooting hormone (I haven't had much luck with rooting hormone powders in the past)? By scratching rooting hormone powder, do I significantly reduce the probability of successful propagation? My ficus has numerous small nodules on its stems, which I assume have the ability to develop into aerial roots - could I just wrap the damp sphagnum moss around an area of stem containing a bunch of these nodules and wait for roots to develop? Has anyone had success using a similar method? Any tips on air-layering will be appreciated!

    Thanks!
     
  2. mudfoot

    mudfoot Member

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    Location:
    Zone5 USA
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    This is not to do with air-layering. I had a rubber plant that was about 5-6 ft tall and just leggy and ugly. It was time to let it go. I cut it back to about 6 inches, took it completly out of it's pot and tossed it out in the back yard. Once in a while it got showered when God watered or I watered the back garden but no other attention was paid to it. This was early June in Zone 5 and by early September I could not believe how beautiful that plant looked. It was still root-bound as when I pulled it out of it's pot but the new branch growth and leaves were amazing. I put it back into a pot and over-wintered in the basement under lights. It's back on the deck this year (3rd year) and once again it is looking rather leggy and I'm thinking about doing the same to it. They are really tough plants.
     

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