Rooting hormone is also known as ‘Auxin Hormones’, Rooting hormones are a mixture of plant growth hormones that help promote the cutting of a plant so that a stem node sends out new nodes. In simpler terms, Rooting Hormones help plants crowned roots. 

It is a hormone that accelerates the plant’s growth by helping it transition from producing green stem cells to producing root cells by cutting. They are mainly used for plant propagation because they simplify the whole process. In-plant propagation a ‘cutting’ is any piece of a plant that does not have roots. This may be part of a stem or even just a leaf.

The cutting is removed from the mother plant, treated with hormone and then planted in soil. Roots will be created over time from the cutting as the plant grow. 

Rooting Hormone Home Depot

Several plants can be propagated by taking a piece of the mother plant and using it to grow a new plant (i.e. multiplied). All you need is a leaf, like African violets, and you can develop a new plant in certain instances. You can use leaf or stem cuttings for several perennials and grow them into plants. It does not work for trees and shrubs to use leaves, but you can take part of the stem called a cutting and grow it in this case. 

The chances of right plant rooting are improved by rooting hormones and helping to grow higher quality roots. It makes the process of propagating plants easier. It may be ideal for vertical gardening to use this form of the hormone to minimize the time it takes for plants to grow correctly and ensure that their roots hold firmly in the soil. It may come in the form of either powder, gel, or fluid. 


It’s a battle for survival when you take a plant cutting to grow a new plant because that piece of the plant has been cut off from its life source. To survive, the natural rooting hormones (auxins) inherent in the plant can either kick in or help them through the use of rooting hormones. In general, on their own, naturally fast-growing plants and young cuttings do great but slow-growing plants and woodier cuttings will benefit from rooting hormone application.

It is important to note that without the rooting hormone, many plants can still form roots. You may cut a piece of stem or leaf from most sedums, for instance, and they will root. Without hormones, most perennials can embed very easily as well. Some trees quickly root, some only with rooting hormones, and some not even with rooting hormones at all. The best thing is really to know what plants do and do not need rooting hormones so that you do not damage the plants in the process of trying to help them. Hormones are potent chemicals and can destroy clippings and plants if improperly used. With several different rooting hormone concentrations available, it is good to analyze the product’s packaging carefully to ensure that the formula is ideal for your plant. 

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If you think about how the hormone is applied during propagation, you will understand that the amount added will vary considerably. Some individuals like to dip more or longer, then shake off less. To make a hole, some use a pencil, and some do not. It is better to take a bit of the hormone out of the bottle you purchased while using the rooting hormone, and put it in another small container or flat dish before usage. For each cut, you will only need very little. 

Discard whatever is left after adding the rooting hormone to all your cuttings. This would minimize the ability of future cuttings to spread diseases. 

How to use Rooting Hormone in water

Rooting hormones in water can work. Water assists in the absorption of the rooting hormone into the plant, increasing production. Rooting cuttings in water is, however, only suitable for some plants. 

Using honey as the rooting hormone 

1. Trim the stem cutting to be used 

2. Get a tablespoon of honey, put it in the jar to be used for the process 3. Pour a cup of water in the jar with the honey 

4. Place the cutting in the jar 

5. Change water every 4/5 days, but keep adding honey 

Using rooting hormone powder 

1. Get a fresh stem cutting 

2. Dip in water to moisturize 

3. Dip in rooting powder, but don’t dip farther than the planting depth 

4. Shake off excess powder 

5. Make a hole in a soulless potting medium with a pencil that is wide enough so that the powder is not rubbed off 

6. Water lightly and keep the cutting warm at 60 F or higher, keep out of direct sunlight. 

How to use Rooting Hormone liquid

Liquid forms of the rooting hormone are available either as a ready blended solution or as a concentrate. According to instructions, if it is a concentrate, you may have to dilute it before using it. When cut, discarding unused liquid is best as it is only suitable for a day. 

Liquids are more readily converted to the cutting hormone than powders. Therefore, it is impertinent to monitor the amount of time that the cutting remains in the liquid. Follow the instructions exactly as they are given on the pack, but it usually takes no more than a couple of seconds. More extended immersion can result in too much hormone entering the cutting process, which can stop rooting. Following the method mentioned above for powders, stick the cut in the planting medium. 

How to use Rooting Hormones on succulents

Choose healthy leaves. When you begin with a healthy mother plant and healthy leaves, you will have better results. Choose leaves without any discolourations, spots or markings that are evenly coloured. 

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Remove the leaves gently from the stem. Twist gently off the leaves of the stem with your thumb and forefinger, using your fingertips. Some leaves quickly fall off, and some are tightly stuck to the stem. Wiggle the leaf back and forth gently before it comes off with the entire leaf. You want the whole leaf, including the base to which the stem is attached. It will not survive if the leaf’s base does not come off, or if the leaf gets hurt. 

Wait for the wounds to dry once you successfully extract the leaves from the stem. This can take from two days to about a week. You would see a callous or scab pattern at the base of the leaf where it was separated from the stem. During this process, the leaves need to be put somewhere warm and away from direct sunlight before you put them in the potting medium or they will rot and die, so the leaves need to be dry and calloused over.

Dip the leaf’s scarred end into the rooting hormone, then stick the same end into an excellent potting mix immediately. To protect it, bundle the soil around the leaf. Hormone rooting is optional, and if you decide not to use a rooting hormone, you can skip this step. Stick the calloused end of the leaf without a rooting hormone directly into the potting mix. 

Summarily, Apply the rooting hormone to the portion of the leaf nearest to the middle of the plant and cover it with a soil-free potting mix, depending on the leaf structure—plant part of the leaf in the mixture. If the leaf has a short stem, as seen in African violets, dip the stem into the rooting hormone and plant it just as you do with stem cuttings in the potting soil, sinking the stem into the mixture up to the leaf. 

Frequently asked questions 

Q1. Can you put rooting hormones on roots? 

Yes, but there is no need to. Once the plant has developed roots, it doesn’t need a rooting hormone. Rooting Hormones are supposed to help when the plant is not expanding its roots, so it is not growing.

They do not replace the roots, and they stimulate the growth of roots so plants can grow. So putting them on roots makes no significant difference and might even damage the plant depending on its concentration level as they are chemicals. The plant won’t grow without roots. Some plants can quickly develop roots. For instance, some succulents build roots on any leaf that falls to the floor. Other plants, particularly woody plants, are much more reluctant to make roots. You can add rooting hormones to the pieces of plant material before placing them in the soil to help plants create roots, but adding the hormone to roots does nothing for the plant. 

Q2. How long does it take rooting hormones to work? 

It is very dependent on the underlying plant on the rate of action. Within 1-2 weeks, some plants root, others can take many months. The rooting hormone makes the process easier and increases the rate of success; rooting is not easy, regardless of whether or not a rooting hormone is used. So this is entirely dependent on the plant itself. Applying more rooting hormone or reducing the amount applied doesn’t quicken or slow down the process. It would help if you allowed the plant to go through its natural timeline without further interference to damage the plant. 

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Q3. Can you use too much rooting hormone?

Yes, it is possible to use too much of the rooting hormone can be used. To ensure that you don’t harm the cells, follow the instructions on the package label. Similar to overdosing yourself with drugs, cuttings are often risky with a high level of rooting hormone. Follow instructions as given on the pack and pay attention to the concentration level. In the long run, this may contribute to the loss of the plants’ natural genetic ability. Much as when we use steroids in the human body, and they damage the body later on. The genetic strength of the plants is influenced similarly by the use of excess rooting hormones. 

Q4. What are the best rooting hormones? 

The most popular type of rooting hormone is liquid, but there are two different formats in which it is sold. The first one is the rooting hormone of standard intensity that can be used right out of the bottle. The second is a potent rooting hormone that needs to be diluted to be appropriately applied. 

It would help if you poured it into a separate jar while using a ready-to-go liquid rooting hormone, rather than dipping it directly into the bottle. This protects your cuttings from being infected by some disease. 

You must dilute it before you can use it if you are using the concentrated form. You may think diluting the rooting hormone is a hassle, but it appears to be cheaper than the ready-to-go format. 

If you want a rooting hormone that is more shelf-stable, go for the powdered variety. When using rooting hormone powder, first dip the cuttings in water so that the powder adheres to the cut area and seals it. Then, to prevent contamination, dump some powder into a separate bowl or plate. Finally, in the powder, dip your wet cuttings and shake off any excess. 

The gel form is the most common of the three forms of rooting hormone. When using rooting hormones with gel, all you need to do is place the gel in a small container and then dip your cuttings in them. The gel will cling to the cut so that there is nothing else you need to do. Then, put your cut in a growing medium, and you’re all right to go. This is generally preferred as it is easier to use. 

Some recommended rooting hormones of the three types include : 

• Dip’ N Grow Liquid Rooting Hormone 

• Garden Safe Take Root Rooting Hormone (powder)

• HydroDynamics Clonex Rooting Gel


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