Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Mother plant, and a name for the cat

A while back, Pamela J asked about growing coleus from cuttings. The Blonde Gardener has some advice, or you can read about my attempt below.

My plan was to grow a mother plant over the winter from one cutting. So I took my cutting and stuck it in a cup of water.

The aluminum foil is primarily for support and to keep the leaves out of the water, but I think the roots develop better in the dark. (Demonstrating whether this is so is an idea for a science fair project, kids.)

And I waited a while - a few weeks in this case - for roots to form.

Then I potted the plant and will now treat it like any other houseplant.

Coleus don't need a lot of sun, but even if it gets leggy, no problem. In late winter/early spring, I will take cuttings off the mother plant, enough to repopulate the planter on my front porch, and root those. Voila! Free plants!

And now the cat name. I wanted something that suits the big guy. He's not a Rufus (which rhymes with Doofus, which he is not either). Hunter felt close, but I tend to sweet talk my pets by rhyming their names (e.g. Betsy Wetsy, which initially was too appropriate), thus Hunter fell by the wayside. A single syllable seemed right, but what? Last night I actually lost sleep trying (unsuccessfully) to come up with the perfect name. Today I stumbled over it online: Finn, which is Irish for "fair-haired". It also sounds solid, like the cat. So Finn it is.

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