This is from our “Mondays with Mike” Series.
Of February 2nd of 2014 I posted This about Doing Hardwood Cuttings in the Dead of Winter. Beautiful winter photos, bitter cold! It got down to -15 degrees F. here in Ohio and we had many other days well below zero. How in the world can you root cuttings outside, in that kind of weather?
I did it! And I did it with a great deal of success. Look at the original page, then watch this video.
The Wooden Plant Propagation Flats in the video? Here’s how I Made them.
Should hardwood cuttings soak in water before planting them?
No, I’ve never done that. Just stick them as soon as you cut them.
Herb Graybill says
Thanks Mike for your help.
What is the reason we allow a couple of leaves on the softwood cutting when placing in the sand to root? Do the cuttings need photosynthesis to grow roots?
Hard wood cuttings can produce roots without leaves. What is the difference?
Absolutely they do need photosynthesis to root and stay alive. Hardwood cuttings are dormant, rooting is the only thing taking place.
Started a dogwood from a seed in May. It is about 12 inches tall but no branches. I would like to keep it in my home till next spring. Does it need to be cut back? Will it branch on its own?
This fall I would plant it outside, it needs to go dormant for the winter. They are tougher than you think. But don’t wait to late to move it outside. Early Sept would be a good time. Let it grow to a height of 48″ then clip the top off and it will fill out.
We made cuttings of many plants in our yard about three weeks ago. We are now in 90-100 degree weather. Our plants are in sun only a short time period of the day. We spray their leaves every hour. The forsythia we did was doing really well until we hit this hot weather. It is now very droopy and looks like it is dying. Some of our other cuttings are wilting really fast as well.
What can we do?
Smith, mid summer propagation can be challenging, unless you have this system, https://mikesbackyardnursery.com/mikes-plant-propagation-kit/. But here are ideas for alternative methods. https://mikesbackyardnursery.com/2015/01/easy-summertime-plant-propagation-techniques-can-home/
juan gallegos says
Dear mike i miss yor booklet regarding how to propagate flower plans from cuttings please send me where to sed and the cost of it thanhs juan
You can find it on https://mikesbackyardnursery.com/, just poke around a bit and you’ll see a link for it.
You make it seem so simple lol and yet plant propagation is something that I cannot grasp, my results are very hit and miss unfortunately.
I have a little tip with regards to Willow cuttings – you may already know about this method but it’s the one plant where I can guarantee 99% success.
When the plant is dormant I take cuttings of any length (you can do anything from 6″ to 6ft cuttings depending on your market) and then I simply tie em together in their correct sizes, put them in a bucket of water and leave them. In the spring every single cutting will have rooted and be showing green shoots and it also does away with the problem of rigorous willow roots tangling or going down into the ground and making them harder to separate gently.
Once they’ve rooted I literally use a piece of bar to hammer a hole into the ground, drop the rooted willow in and then water it in – the ones I did this spring are already looking amazing.
Like I said you probably already know of this method but I thought I’d mention it because you explained that your willow had rooted to the point of being difficult to get out of the flats.
The other good thing about leaving them in water is the water is then good for plants and aiding propagation afterwards because the willow leeches auxin hormone into the water which aids root development.
Thanks for the tip. Willow will also root if you just make the cutting and stick it right into the soil. That works with a number of different plants when they are dormant. Plant propagation is very easy, it’s more about timing than it is technique. More here http://www.freeplants.com/homemade-plant-propagation.htm
Can grapes be rooted in summer?
I’m sure they can in a system like this http://www.freeplants.com/homemade-plant-propagation.htm, but doing them in the winter is much easier. The ones that I did this winter look great right now and it’s July.
Hello Mike: love your videos. I have a fig tree that I want to take cuttings from; I live in Central Florida. Any suggestions?
I don’t know a lot about figs, but try this, http://www.freeplants.com/homemade-plant-propagation.htm
Figs are super easy to root. I live in texas I like to put a brick on the bottom branches and let them grow for a season and come back in the winter cut them from the tree and dig them up. I’ve also heard of people just setting cuttings in a little water till roots start to appear. They are pretty hearty and forgiving I’m sure any of the methods Mike suggest would work with a high percentage
Is it possible to use pallets as flats?
If you take them apart I suppose it would be fine.
I have beautiful weigelias. I am moving soon and want to take some cuttings with me. Can I take cuttings while it is still flowering?
I pinned down some branches last fall with no success. Can I did them up with any success?
Digging them now would be traumatic, but you can take cuttings now using this http://www.freeplants.com/homemade-plant-propagation.htm
Two questions for you:
1) can you use the hardwood style flats for soft wood propagation ( with sand and mist of course)?
2) I stuck about 1500 hardwood cuttings in February – plum, peach, apple, pear, cherry, black locust, grape etc. I put then into a compost sand mix and stuck them really close together ( 1/4 inch apart). I’m not seeing much sprouting… maybe 100 total out of the 1500 – what do you think I did wrong?
The wooden flats would be great for softwood cuttings, but come winter any flats needs covering because of the amount of air around the flat. That’s why I root softwoods in a bed of sand. Most of the hardwoods that you stuck are usually not grown from hardwood cuttings for that reason. Most of the fruit trees are budded or grafted.
Guess I should go read your book… I didn’t get to the part about how to do what… I was really bummed about my results – I should probably start with some easier stuff first!
About covering the flats, would surrounding the sides with mulch be sufficient or would I need to partially bury them like your grow boxes? Am I trying to protect them from drying out or getting too cold?
Thanks for the great advice!