In early June of this year we stuck thousands of cuttings in our propagation bed. Today is September 18th, 2020 and I am pulling some of the cuttings from the propagation bed to get potted up.
Most of the cuttings that I stick in June are fully rooted in about 6 weeks so we have actually been harvesting cuttings from this bed since late July or August. But today we noticed that we are low on Red Prince Weigela for spring so I want to get some out of the sand and get them prepared for potting up.
I didn’t think to start the video when I started pulling the cuttings so when the video starts they are all out of the sand, but I do explain the process and show you exactly how I get them out of sand, how I trim both the tops of cuttings and the roots.
I’ll also mention that many of these rooted cutting had grown quite a bit since we stuck them in June so a few weeks ago I went down through the bed with a pair of hedge shears and whacked the tops of. I don’t want tall lanky cuttings, I want them full at the bottom, then they can grow taller.
So even though I can’t get them out of the bed to get them potted right away, I at least trim the tops. That makes them start branching down lower and it actually keeps them from shading themselves too much.
I’ll take a few still photos of the bundles of cuttings and get them added to this page so you can sell them up closer.
Questions, comments, mean things to say? Post them below and I’ll respond.
Until then, by any and all means stay inspired!
MIKE, i have un-named black and red currant`s, and several varietys of dianthus,, i am searching for 1 gallon pots and every website i searched are out of stock,, will it be ok to leave the rooted cuttings in the beds till i can find some containers?
Yes, all of my cutting that we just rooted, thousands of them, wills stay in the propagation bed until spring.
Can this method be used with citrus, mango or avocado trees. I use air layering but would like to explore different methods if possible. Love your page, it’s a wealth of knowledge. Thank you and Happy Holidays.
I’d try to do those plants as softwood cuttings in spring/summer. See this; https://mikesbackyardnursery.com/2015/01/easy-summertime-plant-propagation-techniques-can-home/
and this; https://mikesbackyardnursery.com/mikes-plant-propagation-kit/
Mike I trying your method of rooting cutting in plastic dollar store tubs. any suggestions on getting the cuttings out of the tub without hurting the roots?
You might be able to flip the tub catching the block of rooted cuttings in your hands then laying the block on a bench. Get your hands under the block of cuttings and shake it, shaking away as much of the rooting medium as possible. With my flats I stand them on end, then tip them into my hands catching the cuttings upside down and then do as describe. Or just work your fingers under one corner of the cuttings and shake as you lift out a section. They usually separate pretty easily.
Jean Henry says
Do you sterilize your cutting beds, periodically replace the sand, or does sand inhibit fungus problems with sun, wind, & rain?
(THANKS for all the fabulous info & inspiration you share with us!!!)
I don’t sterilize and I really don’t replace sand, but sometimes I will add some fresh sand on top.
Your page is exactly what I was looking for.
I am new at this and am building a propagation box.
No w from what I have been seeing on your video’s I hope that I am doing this right.
My question today is ;
The plastic on the top of the box should not allow air into the box correct? Because I see gaps and am wondering that during the winter it will let cold air in and freeze the cuttings. Should I ensure that the plastic cover is air tight?
The box does not have to be air tight and over the winter you can actually open it up and let rain and snow in on the cuttings. It needs to be closed in the summer when you are doing softwood cuttings. But it doesn’t have to be airtight.
Dave M says
Mike, you need to buy some new pants for yourself! I’m inspired by your moxie
Leta Dawson says
Hi Mike. I have a question about Sawtooth Sunflowers. While they are growing, can I cut off some of the height so they will bush out instead of being so tall when they bloom?
I would say you can, we do that with many of the perennials in our nursery.
Susan Benavidez says
Hi Mike, I just watched your latest video, where you took some cuttings from the propagation bed and bunched them up and put them in another bed. My question: Can I skip that process and stick each cutting in a pot to be potted up? Cut out the second bed all together?
Sure you can. I do that when it’s really hot. It gives them a chance to harden off before potting. Ideally don’t pot at all when it’s hot and dry. Pot in the spring and fall.
I took hardwood grape cuttings in March of this year I live in missouri. I planted all cuttings in a 5 inch deep flat and left out side all winter They flourished this spring but with moving this summer I have not had time to plant them in their permanent place. Question: when should I plant them now ,when they go dormant or spring
Jan, they’ll be dormant in a few weeks, I’d plant them out then.
Mike My rooted cutting seem to be putting on new green leaves but when I took them out to check the roots there weren’t any yet. Is this fairly typical? Isn’t 5-6 weeks long enough to see root growth?
It is typical. Things are going to be slower to root this time of year and 5 weeks is really the minimum amount of time under ideal conditions.
Karen Graf says
I started cuttings from azalea, redbud and ficus on August 10. Can I just leave them in the sand with trash bag outside for the winter or do I need to pot them – what other special care?
If it were me I’d just leave them where they are until spring.