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Posted at: Dec 2, 2017, 2:10 AM; last updated: Dec 2, 2017, 2:10 AM (IST)GREEN HOUSE

On a chrysanthemum high

Amarjeet Batth

With the chrysanthemum plants starting to flower, home gardens are all set to come alive with colour.  Propagation of these plants is done by rooting of terminal cuttings in sand as a rooting medium. Terminal cuttings of size 6-8 cms from growing shoot are taken from the mother plant and inserted in sand keeping only 3-4 leaves. These cuttings are kept moist and under shade. Within two week roots appear. These cuttings are planted first in a 4” pot before transferring theese into bigger pots.

Size of the pot

The size of the pot should depend on the variety of chrysanthemums. As a thumb rule  two third ratio of pot size and plant spread must be maintained. The number of plants in a pot also depends on this ratio.       

Preparing the mixture

The pot mixture should consist of, one part of sterilised garden soil, one part of farm yard manure, two parts of leaf mould, two table spoons of bone meal. While planting the seedlings add DAP and administer a dose of Captan (0.3 %) 2 ml in one liter of water to avoid rotting of cuttings.

Pinching

In spray varieties terminal buds are pinched and the side shoot branch off the basal nodes. Pinching is done to the main stem to promote the side branching and increase number of flowers. In standard varieties only one flower is required, therefore, no pinching is required.  All the side shoots and buds emerging from the root axis are debudded and only terminal bud is maintained.

Staking

Staking is done to support the growing stem. Standard variety being top heavy requires support stick which is carefully tied to the stem. The spray variety needs support all around the periphery of the pot to curtail the spread of the plant. Staking is done preferably with strong, split bamboo stakes which are inserted deep enough in the compost to support the grown up plant not damaging the roots.

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