A cutting is an identical clone of a plant. It’s involved in the asexual means of propagating plants and is the most inexpensive way to produce new plants from a mother plant.

In order to understand cuttings, it’s important to note that, when placed under favorable conditions, every cell of a plant has the capability to develop into its own, fully functioning plant. It is in this way that a cutting from a healthy mother plant can be grown into many new plants which are identical to the mother plant.

A cutting is obtained by clipping or slicing a small portion of a mother plant’s branches which contains a meristem. This cutting is stored in a plastic bag to retain humidity and grow roots.

Stem cuttings, leaf cuttings and root cuttings are the different kinds of cuttings. Stem cuttings stand as the most common method of cutting and are always successful in the case of fleshy-stemmed plants. These kinds of cuttings can also root in plain water, but water-rooted seedlings cannot survive when transferred to soil. Leaf cuttings are more common in herbaceous, indoor, and woody plants where a single leaf can propagate into numerous leaves or plants. Root cuttings are chosen when the plant is dormant, and the roots are full of carbohydrates.

Regardless of the cutting method, the mother plant must be chosen with the utmost care. If it is not healthy enough to survive having a part of itself clipped off then it should be considered not healthy enough for cutting.