Explain vegetative propagation.

Vegetative propagation

It is the plant’s ability to reproduce by producing new plants from vegetative plant parts such as roots, stem, and leaves.

Vegetative propagation is classified into two types:

Natural vegetative propagation

It is a process involving structural modification of stems, roots, or leaves of plants.

Propagation by leaves: In Bryophyllum, the leaf allows the development of many shoot buds. These buds form roots at their base. When these plantlets break and fall from the parent leaf on the ground, a new plant is formed.

Propagation by shoots: In a potato plant, the stem is modified to store food. This modified stem is called the tuber. Since it is a modified stem, it has many auxiliary buds over its surface called eyes.Each of these buds, when planted in soil, can develop into a new plant.

Propagation by roots: Roots are modified to store foods in sweet potato, asparagus, carrot, turnip, etc. When these get detached from the parent plant, they form a new plant.

Artificial vegetative propagation

This process is used commercially for improving the yield, quality, and disease resistance in plants and their products.

  • Commercial use of tubers, corns, bulbs, rhizomes, etc. to obtain high yields
  • Cuttings: It refers to the formation of a complete plant from regenerated pieces of roots, stems etc.

For example, roses, sugarcane, money plant, etc.

  • Grafting: In this method, a stem cutting from the desired plant (scion) is inserted in a rooted plant (stock), which is resistant to diseases. Then, they are bound firmly with tape or cloth so that they have vascular continuity. For example, rose, mango, citrus, etc.
  • Layering: In this method, the branch of a plant is bent and covered with moist soil called mound. After a few days, roots arise from the underground portion. It separates from the parent plant and grows independently. For example, jasmine, strawberry, bougainvillea, etc.
  • Tissue Culture: In this method, cells of tissues are taken from a plant under sterile conditions. Then, these cells or tissues are kept in test tubes containing culture medium, which allows them to grow faster and develop into a plantlet.


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Vegetative reproduction (vegetative propagation, vegetative multiplication,
vegetative cloning) is a form of asexual reproduction in plants.
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Vegetative reproduction (vegetative propagation, vegetative multiplication, vegetative cloning) is a form of asexual reproduction in plants. It is a process by which new individuals arise without production of seeds or spores. It can occur naturally or be induced by horticulturists.

Although most plants normally reproduce sexually, many have the ability for vegetative propagation, or can be vegetatively propagated if small pieces are subjected to chemical (hormonal) treatments. This is because meristematic cells capable of cellular differentiation are present in many plant tissues. Horticulturalists are interested in understanding how meristematic cells can be induced to reproduce an entire plant.

Success rates and difficulty of propagation vary greatly. For example willow and coleus can be propagated merely by inserting a stem in water or moist soil. On the other hand, monocotyledons, unlike dicotyledons, typically lack a vascular cambium and therefore are harder to propagate.

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