ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Plant Propagation from Cuttings

Updated on July 1, 2017

Propagate with Cuttings

Plant propagation is fun and easy.

One of the simplest ways to propagate certain types of plants is by taking and rooting stem cuttings. Plant cuttings are parts of a parent plant that are severed and then placed in a rooting medium, such as peat moss, soil or water, until they root and can be replanted as a new plant.

Growing from cuttings produces a very predictable new plant.

There are 3 types of wood cuttings for propagating your plant – softwood, hardwood and semi-hardwood. I think the terms are fairly self-explanatory, yet each is treated differently

Softwood cuttings are taken in late spring and early summer, before the shoots become woody and hard. Semi-hardwood and hardwood cuttings are best taken late in summer, fall or early winter, from mature or last season’s wood.

Propagating with Hardwood Cuttings

Hardwood cuttings are much more durable than softwood cuttings, which is why this type of plant propagation is the best technique for the home gardener. Most of the information is also applicable to semi-hardwood cuttings.

Autumn is the best season to get new plants started for next year’s plantings. All your cuttings should be collected from vigorous, healthy plants that are free of insect pests, disease, or nutrient deficiencies.

Early morning, when the plant is fully turgid, is the best time to take cuttings. Keep the cuttings cool and moist until they are inserted into the rooting medium. A dark plastic bag with wet paper towels can be used to store them. Place them in a plastic bag in a refrigerator if you don't intend to use them right away.

Take cuttings a quarter to three-eighths inch in diameter (about the diameter of a pencil or slightly larger), and generally four to eight inches long. Look for a stem that does not have a flower or a flower bud. Remove the lower leaves, and cut off the stem about half an inch below the leaf node.

Hardwood cuttings are more difficult to root than softwood cuttings, and it may take two to four months for roots to form. The use of a rooting hormone will often ensure a better chance of your cutting rooting. Before you insert the cutting in the rooting medium, scarify the lower part of the stem and then dip it into the rooting hormone.

Ensuring Success

Hardwood cuttings generally will root successfully when inserted in garden soil in the open only in warmer climates. Select a protected area, then keep an eye on them over the winter. Since hardwood cuttings are harvested in the least desirable growing season, they are slower to root, and often the percentage that will root is lower.

However, don’t give up on them too soon. I’ve had cuttings take up to 8 months to root! Come early spring, transplant them to pots or to their permanent home in your garden.

Another alternative is to put each cutting into its own container of sterile soil, sand or peat moss, and keep in a cool yet protected spot over the winter. Keep them moist, but be careful not to over-water, since the cutting is in a semi-dormant stage. When the new rooted plant is ready to be moved to its permanent location, it will be less stressed, as the roots are contained.

Some of the landscape plants and herbs easy to propagate with hardwood cuttings are escallonia, azalea, deutzia, lavender, ivy, rosemary, sage, mock orange, cotinus, roses and figs.

So this fall, propagate some of your leafy shrubs – both deciduous and evergreen – by taking cuttings.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      Nolimits Nana 

      9 years ago

      What a great idea! We do find here on the west coast that cuttings root much more quickly than where I lived formerly (chilly Edmonton, Alberta), and I can leave them outside all winter.

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 

      9 years ago from America

      Enjoyed your hub. Taking cuttings sounds like fun. I start new hydrangeas by burying the flower then it roots I cut it off and plant in another spot.as

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)