Blueberry cuttings

Krazy-in-FloridaFebruary 1, 2013

Does anyone have a method of taking cuttings from an old(12 year+) large bush? I have a rabbit-eye variety that is incredibly sweet. I have never successfully been able to propagate it. The bush is around 8' tall. Any pruning advice would be welcomed as well.

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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Krazy,

Where are you in Florida? There are a bunch of ways to propagate it. You could take cuttings and there are plenty of places on the web to read up on how. Your BB looks real shrubby you could see if around the base if there is a limb that has roots that you could cut off with roots. Or you could bend a limb down and wound it then apply some rooting hormone and pin it to the ground and cover it with soil soil and wait till it roots. There are a bunch of ways.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 12:31PM
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Krazy-in-Florida

I'm in the northwest panhandle, just east of Pensacola. I have rooting hormone, would I need to skin the bark and apply hormone before covering with dirt?

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 3:42PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Yes that should work. Keep it moist but will take awhile.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 4:19PM
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Bradybb(wa8)

Krazy,
The weather there is a little different than where I'm at,but there are two ways or times that I do it that should work there also.
Hardwood cuttings:taken during the Winter,it may be a little late for that now in Florida.The wood,about 4-6 inches,is taken from non fruiting previous year growth and then stored in damp peat for a couple months in a refrigerator.They are then put in something like a peat/perlite mix when it starts to get warm outside.
Softwood cuttings:the wood is cut from new growth that is not too soft or hard,in the Spring and Summer.About the same length as the hardwood ones,but keep some leaves at the top of each cutting and stick them in peat/perlite mixture.
Some people put a plastic bag over the container to keep it humid.I've tried that with some success,along with spraying the leaves with a bottle.
The idea with softwood cuttings is to keep a film of moisture on the leaves until roots can develop.
Another way is to make a chamber and use a pond fogger and timer to keep it humid and let it do the work.Just remember to keep them out of direct sunlight.
From what I've read,Blueberries don't respond too much to rooting hormone,but it probably couldn't hurt.
I'm including a Youtube link from the guy who gave me the idea about the misting box. Brady

Here is a link that might be useful: Propagation of Blueberry Cuttings Using Fog

This post was edited by Bradybb on Fri, Feb 1, 13 at 23:10

    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 11:04PM
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stevelau1911

If you happen to want to produce more species, I would suggest simply growing them from seed. It's not all that hard however they to take at least 4 weeks to germinate, and will grow very slow for the first 3 months as they are building up steam, but afterwards, they should grow pretty quick for you in Florida.

I did mine with a simple seedling tray with peat moss inside of it and I believe that anyone should be able to replicate my results.

One of the keys to success in this is to start with sterile soil so there are no contaminants or fungus gnats. Fungus gnat larvae can destroy a crop of seedlings as they will literally eat them, but keeping the humidity dome on them can keep the seedlings safe.

Here is a link that might be useful: Growing blueberries from seed

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 1:23AM
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Krazy-in-Florida

Thanks for all the great advice. stevelua1911, I did the seeds last year. I put the berries in a blender and kept adding water and dumping off the pulp until I only had seeds. I dried them for a week then planted them in my greenhouse. They did great until some type of insect devoured them in one day. I was depressed about it because there were about 80 plants that got about 3 inches tall, then they were gone in one day.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 5:37AM
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