Every gardener has their weakness. For some, it’s roses. For others, tomatoes. For me, a flower or vegetable moves to the top of my list if I can save the seeds or take a cutting for next year.
Fall is the time for most seed saving but, once you learn how easy it is, no flower is off-limits at any given time of year. I did a video of this for Hometalk last year if you want to take a look. I will warn you it’s about forty minutes long but I do cover how to save a lot of different seeds. Once I realized how much money I could save by saving seeds and doing cuttings, I became obsessed with it.
Some of my favorite seeds I like to save are sunflowers, zinnias, and marigolds, Oh, wait! I can’t forget about dill, basil, celosia, and Allium. Oops! There’s also coneflower, black-eyed susan, tomatoes, fennel, and milkweed. Seriously, the list is very, very long. When I tell you I’m obsessed, I am not joking!
As for cuttings, the past couple of years I have added an area of sweet potato vines to my back flower bed. (p.s. I also do cuttings of coleus and that can be seen here)
Sweet potato vines spread very quickly and fill in bare areas very well. They don’t mind full sun but I noticed they needed extra watering during our extreme summer heat. Last year, I put them in a bed that gets afternoon shade and they really surprised me how well they did.
Here is an easy way to make these cuttings.
First, cut off a good section of the vine.
Then cut this into individual sections about five-six inches long.
Remove all the leaves except the top
As you are doing this, put the cuttings in a container of water. After the container is full, take them inside and let them sit, or leave outside in a shady, protected place. After about a week, tiny roots will form and this is the signal they are ready to be potted. If the weather’s still nice, keep them outside and let the roots get established. When the forecast starts showing temps close to the 40’s at night, bring them inside and put in a sunny area until spring.
By spring, the root system will be well established and, after all signs of frost are gone, they can be planted.
I hope you will try taking some cuttings this year. I need other people to be as hooked as I am!