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cutting,in horticulture, part of a plant stem, leaf, or root cut off and used for producing a new plant. It is a convenient and inexpensive method of propagation, not possible for all plants but used generally for grapes; chrysanthemums; verbenas (stem cuttings); blackberries (root cuttings); African violets (leaf cuttings); and for many other plants. Cuttings, as soon as they are made, are usually placed in moist sand, frequently heated from below; if taken in the fall, as hardwood cuttings of trees or shrubs, they are kept in unheated sand over the winter and planted in the spring. The word cutting alone usually means stem cutting; slip is a common synonym. The general availability today of rooting hormones and misting devices has made possible the propagation by cuttings of many kinds of plants that had not previously responded favorably.
See G. W. Adriance and F. R. Brison, Propagation of Horticultural Plants (2d ed. 1955); H. Hartmann and D. E. Kester, Plant Propagation (5th ed. 1990).
a part of a plant used for vegetative propagation. Cuttings are obtained from high-quality plants. Plants grown from cuttings retain the properties and characteristics of the maternal plant. There are root, stem, and leaf cuttings. Under certain growing conditions, roots form on stem cuttings, buds on root cuttings, and both buds and roots on leaf cuttings. The ability of plants to propagate by cuttings depends on the species and varietal characteristics of the maternal plants as well as on external conditions, for example, temperature, humidity, and aeration.