Stevia is a sweet and calorie-free herb that has become increasingly popular for its use as an alternative to sugar. It is often used in tea, coffee, and other beverages or even desserts. If you are interested in growing your own stevia plants, one of the best ways to do so is by propagating them.
Propagation refers to the process of creating new plants from existing ones. There are several methods for propagating stevia including from seeds, cuttings, and division. In this blog post, we will cover each method in detail so that you can choose which one works best for you.
Propagating Stevia from Seeds
The first step in Propagating Stevia from Seeds is to purchase high-quality stevia seeds from a reputable supplier. You can start your seeds indoors six to eight weeks before the last spring frost or directly sow them outdoors once all danger of frost has passed.
To start your seedlings indoors, fill small pots with seed-starting soil mix and plant two or three seeds per pot. Water gently and keep the soil moist but not soggy until germination occurs (usually within 7-14 days). Once sprouts appear, thin out weaker seedlings leaving only one healthy plant per pot.
When planting outside make sure you have well-draining soil with plenty of sunlight exposure at least six hours every day since it’s essential for successful propagation.
Stevia Cuttings Propagation
Another effective way of propagating stevia is through stem cuttings taken during early summer when growth rates are highest. Ensure that cuts should be made using sharp clean shears about 3-4 inches long just below leaf nodes near base portion without any flowers or buds present on stems
Once you’ve made these cuts remove lower leaves leaving only top two-three sets intact then dip their ends into rooting hormone powder/paste solution(available at garden centers).
After dipping Place cutting ends horizontally into pre-moistened soil mix, making sure not to bury the leaf nodes in the ground. Cover with plastic wrap or a clear plastic bag and place it in indirect sunlight for 2-3 weeks until roots have formed. At this point remove plastic wrap and gradually move cuttings to sunnier locations over the next few days.
Propagation by Division
The process of division involves splitting an established stevia plant into smaller sections that can be planted separately. This method is best done during early spring when new growth appears.
To propagate stevia by division, carefully dig up the entire plant and shake off any excess soil from its roots then use a sharp clean knife blade to separate root sections into halves or quarters depending on their size (keep leaves intact wherever possible). Replant individual portions immediately using fresh potting mix soil and water thoroughly but gently after planting them at least six inches apart.
Propagating stevia is an easy way to multiply your plants without having to repurchase seedlings annually. With patience, you can successfully grow your own sweetener while saving money in the long run.
Growing Stevia through propagation methods mentioned above takes some time investment upfront; however, once established these plants require only minimal care resulting in healthier chemical-free harvests of natural sweetness all year round!