Rooting a seedling

I think I remember reading this some place – if a root gets broken from a seedling, can a the top of the seedling be rooted? Has anybody tried this - success rate?

TIA (Thanks in Advance)

Chris Mauchline

It has worked for me pretty well. If I accidentially break the hypocotyl I still plant it and it generally roots. I pot my seedlings and put domes over them until the first couple true leaves to keep the humidity high. Sometimes I’ve used rooting powder, but usually I haven’t.


It has worked for me too, several times over the last 30 plus years. Sometimes there was only 1/8 of an inch tap root left.

I planted those 1/8 below the surface and in a few days they pushed through and made new roots.

I occasionally leave my germinated seedlings in the bag for too long and they get long and spindly. I have better luck cutting the excess stem off (with the root) and rooting the top and a short section of stem, than I do planting the spindly stem with its own roots. I do use rooting hormone. I cover them with a 1 ounce clear plastic cup, and they are usually making new growth in a couple of weeks.

I ended up having two cotyldons that had broken off. One is now a successful plant. THe other appears to be still alive, and a believe it has roots, but it has not yet put out leaves.

I use 3" peat pots. To maintain humidity, I put a ziplock bag over the pot. I used a 1% strength rooting powder. The seedlings were cotyledons and ~1/4 inch of stem, no roots. I may have gotten too much rooting hormone on the 2nd plant.