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Propagate Scleranthus biflorus

I would like to know if it's possible to propagate Scleranthus biflorus, just by removing the outer edges, also if its okay to remove the lower leaves of an agave when they become tatty.

Scleranthus biflorus, sometimes called a "moss", but in reality a flowering plant, is actually very easy to propagate.  The usual and quickest method is by division.  Clumps often become patchy, with die-back in the middle.  You can divide these clumps, as long as each part has roots.  Just carefully separate and replant into free-draining, gritty soil.  Propagation is also fairly easy by cuttings — just take healthy stem cuttings at any time of the year and plant into sand or pumice.  Keep the cuttings well watered and out of full sun.  Rooting should happen fairly rapidly.

In general, Scleranthus prefers to be in full sun, but will tolerate a small amount of shade.  The soil must be very free-draining, otherwise the winter wet will kill your plant.

As for agaves, yes, you can remove the lower leaves when they become tatty.  If they do not come off easily, then carefully cut them off.  Be careful that you don't cut them too far back, as the leaf bases are where the new "pups" can come from.

UnitecAdvice by Dr Dan Blanchon from Unitec's Diploma in Sustainable Horticulture and Bachelor of Resource Management.

Reproduced with permission from NZOOM Home and Garden content,
from the previous website of  TVNZ News

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