How To Propagate Bottle Brush Plant – Grow It From Cuttings & Seeds

Bottlebrush plants can be easily grown from seeds and cuttings. However, it is possible to propagate bottle brush plants much quicker through cuttings with a little bit of technique involved.

Grow Bottle Brush

Photos from Japan, Asia and othe of the world/Kathrin Ziegler/Firdausiah Mamat/gettyimages


Bottlebrush is an evergreen flowering plant that belongs to the Myrtle family (Myrtaceae). Being a part of the genus Callistemon, it is often referred to as Callistemon.


The quick-growing raceme of bottlebrush consists of several small and individual, bright flowers. You can usually notice these stunning spikes of flowers in crimson or red color during the summer and spring seasons.


You can easily propagate bottlebrush plants through seeds or cuttings. These are the two most popular ways to grow bottle brush trees.


Knowing the correct way how to propagate bottle brush enables you to spread this beauty to multiple locations in your surroundings. You do not have to spend your money again and again to get a new plant from the nursery.


Are Bottle Brush Trees Easy To Grow?

Yes, bottle brush trees are easy to grow, not particularly difficult to say the least, if you know how to do it right. They are indeed not very demanding. When it comes to growing this lovely plant, you should specifically take care of your bottle brush plant and provide it with the appropriate growing conditions.


For instance, after planting place your outdoor bottlebrush plant in full sunlight, use well-drained soil, frequently water it, and add mulch to enhance its growth rate.


How To Propagate Bottle Brush Plant?

There are two ways to propagate bottle brush trees:

  • Through seeds
  • Through cuttings

Let us get into the details of it one by one.

A. How To Grow Bottlebrush From Seed?

Grow Bottlebrush From Seed



To grow a bottlebrush from seeds, choose a good 4-inch plant container and prepare the surface with moist and well-drained soil to sow each seed. Bottlebrush plants require moist soil to germinate well.


So, make sure to lightly cover each pot using plastic to maintain enough moisture in the soil and protect the seed from cold.


Also, take care to place it in a location that gets indirect exposure to bright sunlight. Maintain warm temperatures of about 80 degrees Fahrenheit to help these plants grow well. It will take about 2 weeks for the seeds to germinate.


Once you see the tiny seedlings appear, you can take off the plastic covers. However, the plants should still remain in a well-lit location and moist soil. You can transfer the seedlings again in a bigger pot, once they grow about 3 inches.


1. How Do You Get The Seeds Out Of A Bottle Brush To Propagate Them?

Seeds Out Of A Bottle Brush To Propagate Them



It’s not very hard to source out the seeds of a bottle brush plant. You can collect the tiny woody fruits from the plant attached to the branches. These fruits crack open to produce seeds.


To make things easier, you can also look out for older fruits on the lower branches of the plant. Just get the fruits and keep them covered in a paper bag. Store it in a dry and warm place for a few days. After this, you will notice the fruit burst open to produce small seeds.


2. Prepping The Soil & Sowing The Bottle Brush Seeds

While prepping the soil for sowing bottlebrush seeds, make sure it is well-moist and well-drained. It’s best to choose at least 1-year-old seeds to get the best results.


Actually, when it comes to the question, “how to propagate bottle brush tree?” It is important, very important to prepare a potting soil mix that is favorable for growing healthy seedlings. Otherwise, germination won’t happen in unsuitable conditions.


3. Bottle Brush Temperature Tolerance

It can tolerate upto 10°F. But for growing well bottlebrush plants prefer warm places. So, it’s best to place your seeds in a warm temperature of a minimum  80°F. It is the ideal temperature to promote the germination of bottlebrush seedlings.


4. Watering & Fertilization Needs of A Bottlebrush Plant

Watering And Fertilization Needs of A Bottlebrush Plant

Andrii Yalanskyi/istockphoto


Young Callistemon bottlebrush plants need to be watered frequently till they reach maturity. In dry seasons, make sure to deep water the trees to keep moisture in the soil. Whereas you should keep the plant well-fertilized till it reaches maturity. Also, add a layer of mulch when required to prevent the growth of weeds.


5. How Long Do Bottlebrush Seeds Take To Germinate?

After properly sowing bottlebrush seeds in a well-drained soil mix and watering them on a regular basis you can expect them to sprout in about two weeks.


If you want effective results, take care to cover the seed tray with a plastic cover to maintain moisture throughout the germination stage.


B. How To Grow Bottle Brush Tree From Cuttings?

Grow Bottle Brush Tree From Cuttings

saurav agnihotri/gettyimages


Begin by collecting a healthy bottlebrush plant cutting. That’s the first step toward growing bottle brush trees from cuttings. You can do it by chopping off various sections of four to six inches long stems. Make sure it has at least 3 or more groups of leaves.


Take the wood cuttings and bent them double till it breaks. Now leave two leaves at the top and clip off all the remaining leaves. Crush these remaining leaves to reduce their size to half.


Next, add a good amount of water to your planting mix and blend them properly. You can also add sand and peat moss to the mixture in equal proportions. Take a suitable pot and pour the plant mix into it. Use a pencil to make several holes in this mixture, about 3-5 inches deep.


Make sure to learn how to root bottle brush cuttings for a quicker result. So, for that just apply one tablespoon of rooting hormone to it. Just pour it into a container and then immerse the bottom of your cuttings into it. Remove it when you see a thin layer of powder on the ends.


Lastly, insert these cuttings inside the holes within the planting mix. Carefully secure the cuttings in the mix by setting the mixture around it. Place it in a location that receives indirect sun exposure.


1. How Long Do Bottlebrush Cuttings Take To Root?

Normally, you can see bottlebrush stems grow roots in about 6 to 10 weeks. Whereas, during the winter season, bottlebrush cuttings take more than 10 weeks to root. You can consider transplanting the cutting to a permanent site in 6-10 weeks once you see roots.


Make sure to regularly check it and carefully pull the cuttings to find out if it has formed roots. If you have put a cover on the plant cutting, don’t forget to take off the plastic cover every day, at least for a few minutes. It will help in circulating air through the cuttings.


How To Transplant A Bottlebrush Tree?

Transplant A Bottlebrush Tree

Jenny Dettrick/gettyimages


To transplant a bottlebrush tree once you have the tiny seedling or stem rooted, choose an ideal location where your bottle brush tree can thrive happily for a long time. Just remember that the best time transplant your bottlebrush seedlings is in springtime.


Before you start the process, make sure to place the seedlings outdoors in a safe location. Do it daily for at least an hour or two to make it familiar to the environment. It will help your seedlings to quickly adapt to the new environment.


Start by placing the plant in a hole that’s bigger than its root ball. Secure it carefully by adding compost mixed with soil. Also, prepare a mixture of shredded bark and pine needles. You should use it as a layer of mulch over the potting mix. If you are transplanting several shrubs keep at least 3 feet distance in between each one of them.


Choose a warm location for your plant which gets bright sunlight. These plants need 6 to 8 hours of daily sunlight. Just make sure to always keep these plants in a place with a temperature above 50 degrees Fahrenheit.


These plants can also survive in extremely hot conditions with a temperature of about 90 degrees Fahrenheit.


Bottlebrush trees are not particularly fussy about the type of soil. However, they thrive best in loamy and well-drained soil with some mixed compost. Make sure to add water to young bottlebrush plants every week to keep the soil moist.


Once the soil is saturated, you must water it only when it feels very dry. Don’t overwater it to prevent rotting. It’s not necessary to add chemical fertilizers to promote its best growth. You can instead add a 2-inch layer of compost and mulch over the soil.


Fun Fact: This stunning plant got its name “Bottlebrush” because it appears like a bottle brush cleaner. There are spiked cluster flowers in cylindrical form growing out of the bottlebrush plants. You can also see several long stamens vertically protruding on the outside.


Bottlebrush Tree Information and Queries

Once you have successfully learned how to propagate bottle brush via cuttings and seeds, it is now time to learn where to plant it, what grows best with it, and things alike.

  1. Where do bottlebrush trees grow best?
  2. These trees grow best in areas that have a warm climate. So, you can find them most commonly in coastal regions. However, mature bottlebrush plants have an extreme tolerance towards drought conditions. This means these plants can also survive if you plant them in dry areas.
  3. What to plant with a bottlebrush?
  4. Some of the plants which go perfectly well with Bottlebrush/Callistemon include sweet potato, cannas, bush daisy, ginger, hibiscus, thryallis, copper plant, and muhly grass. When planted with bottlebrush plants, they improve their fertility and help in dealing with pests.
  5. How long does it take for bottle brush trees to grow?
  6. A mature bottlebrush tree can attain a height of 25 to 30 feet in about 30 years. However, most bottlebrush varieties only grow about 15 to 20 feet in height and width.