How To Take Cuttings for Big Shrubs

Forget 6 inch cuttings, for bigger shrubs use bigger cuttings. Giant cuttings of 18-36 inches may be worthwhile on the following:- Cistus, Euonymous, Hebe, Leycesteria, Weigelia, Pyracantha or Kerria japonica. I have a friend who excels with Roses taken this way.
Also read Gardeners tips Taking cuttings for beginners

Proceedure for Cuttings

  • Water the host plant well the evening before taking cuttings.
  • Take cutting early in the day, keep out of the sun and spray with water to minimise wilting.
  • Select a shoot with plenty of new growth. Cut it off cleanly at the base where it comes from a branch or cut below a swelling leaf node instead.
  • Remove any flowers, lower leaves and soft tips by pinching out
  • If the cutting has a woody bark remove a sliver an inch long to aid rooting.
  • Have available one litre pots full of a free draining mix of grit and multipurpose compost.
  • Dip the end of the cutting in fresh hormone rooting compound, such as Murphy’s, plant and water in
  • Place in a humid environment eg. a plastic bag over the pot supported by canes, so leaves don’t touch the sides, and tied with a rubber band.
  • Keep in a shady spot removing dead leaves regularly.
  • In about 5-6 weeks, when rooted, acclimatise to outside conditions and overwinter in a sheltered spot
  • Plant out in March

Climber Cutting Tips

  • For many climbers it is worth burying the tip as well as the heel in the compost making an arch.
  • Clematis montana throws up more side shoots when treated this way.
  • Lonicera honeysuckles react well to this arching technique and may root at both ends
  • The best cuttings are taken from growth which is just hardeneing.
  • Take extra cuttings in case of failures
  • Many climbing roses will grow as climbers from the new root stock. Those that were grafted onto climbing stock may not have the same characteristics.

2009-10-4 Christmas Cactus Cuttings credit Mullenkedheim CC BY-NC-SA 2.0


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  1. Tips for Taking Cuttings for Beginners | Gardeners Tips - April 25, 2012

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