Who Cut the Coleus?

I cut the coleus.
I had to.  I had been holding back.  Timing is everything.
But I couldn’t hold back any longer.
So, right there in the backyard, I cut the coleus.

Kong Coleus
I also cut the sweet potato vine and the begonias.
The forecast for our area is showing lows in the mid 30’s by Saturday night.  For me, that means it’s time to take cuttings of my favorite plants to overwinter until spring.
You see, I’m cheap frugal.  I start most of my plants from seeds or cuttings.  I have too many flower beds to fill and it would cost a small fortune to buy enough to achieve the effect I want.
Coleus and sweet potato vines are among the easiest plants to root from cuttings.  Begonias take a little more time to root, but it can be done.
First, let’s pick out the nicest “stalk” of coleus
Sun Coleus
Pick off the lower leaves until you get to the top 2 or 3 leaves.

Plop it in water and move on to the next stalk.  That’s it.  When you’re done, you will have a nice bouquet of coleus that will last several weeks in the water.
Kong Coleus
Do the same for the sweet potato vine.
Sweet Potato Vine
and begonias.

In a few short weeks, you will notice roots developing in the water.

At this point I either:  a) just leave them in the water a few more weeks or   b)pot them up and move them to their winter home.  They do need to be kept somewhat warm as they are heat loving plants.  And that is the tricky part at my house.
We heat mainly with wood.  Which is great if you stay close to the wood stove.  Venture out into other parts of the house and you can see your breath.  Heat loving plants don’t like to see their breath.
If you have a box with tall sides, pot up the cuttings, water and place in the box lined with a plastic trash bag with a layer of newspapers on top of the trash bag.  Or, pot them up, water, and place on a tray on top of the refrigerator. Try to keep as warm as possible and don’t forget to check occasionally to see if they need water.  Just don’t overwater.  Come spring, just think of the money you will be saving when you replant!
So…. go on…get out there and cut the coleus!