Growing Salvias from plant cuttings is simple with a bit of expert advice from Flowers by the Sea horticulturist Kermit Carter. Although many Salvias are woody, the tips of their stems are soft and green. They're called softwood tips. In this video, Carter talks about how to select the best tips for propagation. He shows how long plant cuttings need to be and explains plant nodes -- the points from which cuttings can produce roots. Sometimes the leaves of a cutting require more moisture than a stem can absorb. Carter trims portions of leaves to reduce wilt and improve rooting. Demonstrating a standard FBTS procedure, he accelerates rooting by dipping the stems of cuttings in powdered rooting hormone and inserting them in tiny foam blocks for easy growth. Carter also suggests heating mats to encourage growth. He shows what the foliage and root balls will look like a few weeks later when ready for transplanting.
Salvia Softwood Tip Cuttings is part of the Views from the Garden video series published in the FBTS Everything Salvias blog. Flowers by the Sea is a horticultural farm and an online, mail order Salvia nursery.