How to Make Rooting Compounds and Hormones at Home

Homemade rooting hormone can be easy and inexpensive to make. As a gardener, rooting hormones help encourage healthy root growth in plant cuttings and can increase the success rate of propagation. While commercial products can be purchased, creating your own rooting hormone is simple and allows you to customize the formula to your specific needs.

Why Use Rooting Hormones

Rooting hormones contain plant growth regulators that enhance root development in plant cuttings. The active ingredients in commercial rooting products are generally synthetic versions of natural plant hormones like auxin or cytokinin.

Some key benefits of using rooting hormones include:

Active Ingredients in Rooting Hormones

The most common active ingredients in DIY and commercial rooting products include:

IBA (Indole-3-butyric acid) is the most widely used for rooting cuttings and found in commercial products like Dip 'N Grow or Rootone. NAA (Naphthaleneacetic acid) is also popular and sold under brand names such as Ferti-Lome Root Stimulator.

How to Make DIY Rooting Hormone

Making your own rooting hormone is inexpensive, easy to customize, and only requires a few simple ingredients. Here are some options:

IBA Rooting Powder



  1. In a small jar, mix together the IBA powder, cornstarch, and cinnamon if using.

  2. Shake or stir the jar to fully combine ingredients into a uniform powder.

  3. To use, dip the cut end of the plant cutting into the powder to coat. Plant as normal.

Willow Water Rooting Solution



  1. Take several 5-6 inch clippings from a willow tree in early spring when sap levels are high.

  2. Add the clippings to a small pot and cover with 2 cups of water.

  3. Boil the branches for 20-30 minutes until the water turns a brown tea color.

  4. Allow to cool fully, then remove the branches and store the "willow water" in a jar. Add 1 tsp honey to help it stick to cuttings.

  5. To use, dip cuttings for a few seconds before planting. Store any extra solution in the fridge.

Aloe Vera Gel



  1. Cut open an aloe vera leaf and scoop out the clear gel within.

  2. Place in a small jar or container. For thicker gel, allow excess liquid to drain out through a cheesecloth.

  3. Add 1 teaspoon honey if desired, then mix well to incorporate.

  4. Dip the cut end of plant cuttings into the gel and plant as normal.

Tips for Using Homemade Rooting Hormone

Follow these tips when using your homemade rooting compounds for the best results:

With the right homemade rooting hormone and proper care of your cuttings, you can propagate your favorite plants for free! Test different DIY formulations to find what works best.