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enter image description hereDoes anyone know how to start a new Kratum plant from an old one?

For a little context, my young cats are attacking my large, four-year-old Kratum plant since I brought the plant in for the winter. They generally only bother it when they want my attention, but I suspect it will not last the winter.

I've put the plant inside a cage. Beyond that, there's not much I can think of doing to protect it because there are two cats, both of whom are only a year old and very inquisitive, and they've figured out that I'll get up and stop what I'm doing once they start digging up the soil and tearing up the leaves of my plants.

All my other plants are smaller and I've put them inside larger, enclosed containers. Sadly, the Kratum plant is a little too large for that - about three feet tall and more than a foot or so wide.

Because of the cats' treatment, the poor thing is not doing well anymore. About half of its leaves are shredded and I keep finding its soil dug out so much that its roots are bare several inches down into its pot. I'm considering moving it into the basement with a plant light to allow it to recover, but that's not a good longterm solution. I'll almost definitely forget to care for it down there any longer than a few weeks.

This brings me to my main question. I'm thinking that a good approach might be to start a new, smaller Kratum plant from the old, larger one while the larger one is recovering in the basement. If I can do that, then I can keep the smaller plant inside one of the enclosed containers with my other plants.

I often take cuttings and use rooting hormone to start new plants from old ones, but that's not working with the Kratum so far. I'm wondering if I'm just stressed about this or if there's some other way to propagate Kratum.

Does anyone know how to start a new Kratum plant from an old one?

  • What type of wood have to you tried so far. Some plants you can get to root from new/green wood (this year's growth while green), others hard/old wood (wood 1 year or older), or semi-hardwood.(this year's growth that has hardened.) Have you tried all three or just one type of wood? The time of the year matters as well, but this have more to do with green vs semi-hardwood, but it also has to do with the tree being dormant of actively growing. Have you tried different times of the year? – GardenGems Dec 24 '19 at 22:46
  • Pictures please – kevinsky Dec 24 '19 at 22:56
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enter image description hereI did not get an answer to this question so I did a lot of research about it.

One thing I learned is that Kratum plants are very similar to coffee plants. I therefore attempted to propagate my Kratum plant in a way similar to how I might successfully propagate a coffee plant.

I started by taking four cuttings, 3/16 to 5/16 inches or so in diameter and about 3 or 4 inches long with a couple of leaves on their ends.

I used a perlite/peatmoss mix I've used for other types of cuttings before, moistening it well before planting the cuttings.

I planted each of the cuttings in a container so that my cats could not get to them. I poked a few small holes in each container for ventilation.

Lastly, after swishing their cut ends in growth hormone, I gently inserted each cutting into one of four predrilled holes I had made in the moist perlite/peatmoss mix. Then I loosely capped the containers to keep the cuttings safe and moist.

Happily, one of the four cuttings is showing new growth already and all four are still very healthy 22 days after being planted.

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  • I'd have built a growth chamber. Nice job figuring this out yourself. – Wayfaring Stranger Jan 22 at 2:00
  • Thanks! By the way - I don't know what a growth chamber is. But my cuttings do have a little chamber that they can carefully grow in. I suspect a growth chamber has other aspects to it that would perfect the system?? Like heat underneath, maybe, and an easier way to remove the plants later?? Heat and plant removal are things I considered but I couldn't figure out a way to do either thing. – Jamie Watts Jan 23 at 14:33
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    Growth chamber controls light, temperature, air-flow and if you work at it, humidity and carbon dioxide. Botanists, plant geneticists and the like use them. I get about 1/2 full sun and temp in the low 80's (F) out of mine. My hobbit jade plants and bananas love it. Humidity is a real problem come winter here in the great white North. Cats also cannot get the chamber door open without using tools, so I'm beastie safe too. – Wayfaring Stranger Jan 23 at 21:08
  • Ha! That sounds absolutely perfect. A new thing to look up. Thank you very much. – Jamie Watts Jan 24 at 16:04

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