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Propagation

Seedling plants take about five years to flower, while cuttings may take only two years. The easiest way to propagate waratahs is from seed, but it is also possible to strike them from cuttings. This is best done in spring or early summer when plants are actively growing.

Use pruning that have several sets of leaves and 15-20 cm long. Plant into an extremely free draining mix and keep them lightly watered until roots form about 4 to 6 weeks later. Cuttings are susceptible to fungal attack so try to achieve very sterile growing conditions to improve your chances of survival. 

Placing your pot on a warm concrete pad might help root growth, and after six months you should have a successful batch of cuttings to plant out in autumn. 

Please don’t pick waratahs when you see them growing in the bush. Apart from depriving others of the enjoyment of seeing them in their natural habitat, this practice depletes natural seed reserves and often results in poor quality blooms compared with those from well-cultivated plants. 

The New South Wales Waratah was once abundant in many areas of the Sydney metropolitan area, and the species’
survival is now due to its existence in national parks, reserves and relatively inaccessible areas.