The effect of stock plant distance (0-1.5, 1.5-3.0, and ?6.0 m) from a shade tree Gliricidia sepium on subsequent rooting of cuttings of Robusta coffee (Coffea canephora. Pierre ex Froehner) clones 126, 197, 375, and C was assessed in a Randomised Complete Block Experiment. Soil under G. sepium crown had higher contents of N, P, and organic C. Consequently, stock plants near the base of the shade tree had higher foliar contents of N and P. Rooting of cuttings of clones 197, 375, and C increased with distance of stock plant from G. sepium. There was, however, no response in clone 126 to distance from the shade tree, indicating a probable clonal variation to the pre-severance effect of G. sepium on the rooting of cuttings. Cuttings from stock plants at 0-1.5 m from the base of G. sepium recorded the highest mortality. Application of N, P, and K fertilizers to stock plants increased rooting and lowered mortality of cuttings, but could not eliminate the effect of G. sepium completely.