Advantages and disadvantages of vegetative propagation

Involve use of plant materials other than seeds such as cutting (sweet potatoes, cassava) suckers (pineapple, banana), stem tubers (iris)



  • Take short time to grow
  • Good qualities are easily retained
  • Easy to propagate
  • High rate of multiplication
  • Asexual propagation can be used for plants with low seed production.
  • Propagating asexually allows for clones.
  • Uniform and true to type offspring can be ensured through asexual propagation.
  • Can often be easier and more economically viable.
  • Undesirable features such as excessive thorns can be minimized by selecting propagation material from less thorny plant parts. The same method can be used to cultivate desirable qualities such as interesting variegated growth.
  • Mature plants are produced more rapidly resulting in faster flower and fruit production.



  • No genetic mixing
  • Difficult to improve on their characteristic
  • Overcrowding leads to competition for resources
  • Bulky to transport
  • Easily spread diseases.
  • his method often requires expensive equipment and structures.
  • Certain plants can only be propagated from a specific cutting type, in many cases the plant material required is only obtainable during a specific season or certain time of the year.
  • Cuttings require more space than the equivalent in seed.
  • Cutting propagation poses the risk of cloning unfavourable genetics. E.g. if the parent plant is susceptible to disease all other clones grown from cuttings will be equally vulnerable.
  • Though possible, the storage of cutting material is considerably harder and less effective than storing seeds.
  • Smaller plants only allow for a few cuttings to be made per plant.
  • Propagating by cuttings tends to be more labour intensive.
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