Propagation: Propagation Of Sedum Morganianum (aka Donkey's Tail or Burro's Tail)

Discussion in 'Cacti and Succulents' started by CJ1023, Aug 12, 2017.

  1. CJ1023

    CJ1023 New Member

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    Crossfield, Alberta, Canada

    I have had no luck at all when it comes to propagating Sedum Morganianum from the leaf "buds". I don't know what I'm doing wrong but I had close to 100 leaves and next to none have survived! From anywhere I've read, this is not the norm. What am I doing wrong?
    First, I'll tell you what I did:

    Batch 1:
    I put 1/4" cactus soil into a pie plate. Spritzed it with water to dampen the soil. Arranged the leaves on top of the soil. Placed the pie plate in a south facing window. I spritzed the soil and leaves about once every day or two. Not a lot, just a light spray all over. The soil always dried out between "spritzings". After about 2 or 3 weeks, some of the leaves had changed from their original light green to a pale almost white colour. Some had changed to a darker greenish brown and went kind of soft, and some almost looked translucent. Yet others had gone leathery/wrinkled looking and some totally dried up. Only a few looked like nothing had "happened" to them.

    Batch 2:
    I took the few that seemed to be okay looking - (still their original green colour and not mushy or dried up) from batch 1 and I moved them over to a small Tupperware dish that was much deeper and would fit nicely on my window sill. I filled it with about 2 to 3 inches of cactus soil and placed the leaves on top of the soil. (I read that if the soil isn't deep enough and is kept moist on top all the time, that the roots wouldn't grow strong or healthy because they would never have to dig down into the soil to look for moisture). Instead of spritzing with a spray bottle, I decided to try letting the tap drip over the soil around each leaf, taking care not to wet the leaves or saturate the soil. I put the container in the south facing window and watered it lightly every other day or more or less as needed. It has been two weeks and thus far, the same thing seems to be happening as in Batch 1.

    Batch 3:
    I just received a long Donkey's Tail clipping to propagate. After clipping it into four sections and removing about an inch and a half of leaves from the stems, I have several more opportunities with which to try propagating via leaf once again... sooo... This time I put roughly an inch and a half of cactus soil into a recycled sour cream tub/container that I poked drain holes into. I spritzed the soil lightly just to dampen it a bit. I placed the leaves all over it and put it on a table near a south facing window that gets very filtered light through it. It receives light, but no direct sun at all. I am hoping that they won't Dry up on me this way, but wonder if I'm doing more harm than good by limiting photosynthesis. I'm not good and very New at this.... any advice would be GREATLY appreciated!!!!

    Should I even put them on soil - or just lay them out on a paper towel, leave them and not water at all until I see roots forming - THEN place them into a pot with soil? Do they need to have direct sunlight for a portion of the day or can they sit on a table near a window without direct sunlight? How long does it take for roots to start showing?

    All these questions... I'm hoping someone can help me! Please!

    P.S. One other thing... I am waiting for the stems to callus over on the long Donkey's Tail cutting that I divided into four sections to propagate. I read that this can take anywhere between 2 weeks to four months before you should plant them in soil. Is this true and will it make any difference if I put them into soil right at the two week point vs 4 months? Is there anything special that needs to be done when planting them - ie: fertilizer etc.. How moist should the soil be? Do I keep the soil moist or let it dry completely before watering it?

    Thanks in advance for any and all help!

  2. Eric La Fountaine

    Eric La Fountaine Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    sw USA
    Gosh, I grew burro's tail a long time ago from leaves and it was really easy. I just left the leaves dry a few days, you want the break to heal enough that bacteria can't get in. Then I wet some sterile growing medium and lay the pieces on it. I don't think I would put it in the sun, just some bright light until it rooted and sprouted. I have always used a light planting media, but keep it fairly moist while the plants are forming. Maybe you should just take some leaves, let them cure a bit and then toss them in with some of your other house plants. Forget about them and in a month you might have nice little starts. My guess is that you are keeping the soil too dry.

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