Is Seed Better Than Cuttings?

There isn’t really a straight yes or no answer here. It all depends on a number of things. You must be so much more vigilant on plant health in indoor gardening than you would with something like creating several more rosebushes from your favorite in the yard. Both methods will require you to monitor the new starters regularly to make sure their needs are met.

Obviously, plants grown from cuttings are going to mature faster than those started from seed. Still if the original plant has any traces of either pests or disease present, using it to start a new crop is going to give you great difficulties. Especially if the reintroduction to the growing space spreads the problem to all other plants you’re growing. You might not always be able to discern there is a health issue brewing. So starting each new crop from seed is infinitely safer and make maintaining a healthy indoor garden easier at times.

There are times when starting new crops from cuttings is preferable to seed for other reasons. For hydroponic growers of some types of heirloom tomatoes on a larger scale, it makes their crop most cost effective with the seed being rather costly to purchase or hard to find. Another reason for choosing cuttings over seed would be if you find you have an unusually productive plant or one whose fruits are remarkably larger, a different color or better tasting than the others in your crop. This is how new plants comes onto the market, and if you only have one of them, then cuttings will be the only way to get more plants just like it.

By the way, cloning is the same as growing from cuttings. Depending on the plant you’re trying to multiply in such a fashion, it can be much trickier than sowing a whole new crop. Seed is generally very inexpensive and super simple to germinate. So, unless you have a super special reason to start new plants from cuttings, seed is the most popular choice.

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Tammy Clayton

Contributing Writer at Garden Culture Magazine

Tammy has been immersed in the world of plants and growing since her first job as an assistant weeder at the tender age of 8. Heavily influenced by a former life as a landscape designer and nursery owner, she swears good looking plants follow her home.