Best and Quickest Rooting Method.

freak4plumeria(So CA zone 10)August 14, 2014

When I intentionally buy or take a cutting I want to root I always water root them, never lost a cutting yet with this method and roots 30 percent quicker than conventional pot/soil method. Well I kept on seeing all these people bag rooting and got me curious to see what all the hype was about. My rarest plumeria had an issue with a branch, so had to do some surgery on it 4 1/2 weeks ago. I let the cutting heal for a week, than I water rooted it for 2 weeks. After water rooting I decided that maybe I should try the bag method to see if it made any difference in time or success in rooting. I bagged up the plumie cutting with a swollen callous and small root nubs. I didn't have Coir when I bagged the plumie up, but did have Miracle gro soil and Cactus mix, so used the bagged soil instead of Coir and perlite. The plumie cutting was a red and based on what I heard from the person who originally found the plumeria and the person I got my original grafted plant from in 2005, it was a hard one to try to root so she and the other 2 people who got a cutting from her grafted them. Due to theft I was fortunate enough to acquire an unrooted replacement cutting from a dear plumie friend and I water rooted it. It took about 6 weeks before it was rooted in soil. Well with this 911 amputated cutting its been 3 1/2 weeks/25 days between the water rooting and bag method and I just checked the bag today and it has a long roots and about 3 to 4 leaves open. This is the fastest a Red/Purple has ever rooted for me regardless of the method. I think I will always use the Water rooting/Bag method from now on.
Here are a close up pic of the roots and then of the whole cutting. If you have never tried Bag rooting you should, would be interesting to hear others feed back.

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I have tried when it was wrong time of year for other way and I put it in a dark warm closet and 3 months it took BUT roots all over the place......roxanne

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 7:41PM
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Havent tried the water or bag rooting method..may have to try that next year! Some great looking roots!

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 9:46PM
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Andrew Scott

Hi James. Personally I am a big fan of water rooting. A few years ago I tried rooting Intense Rainbow. I knew it was going to be a challenge because it was December, but I had the opportunity to get 2 really nice sized cuttings for a very reasonable price.

My first attempt at rooting was using a soilless mix and potting both cuttings with raw eggs. After 1 month, I checked both and neither rooted.

My second attempt was rooting in water mixed with a teaspoon or so of vitamin B1 and I swear within a week both cuttings had rooted!

Now as far as bag method, I never have had good luck. I did receive 2 cuttings in the mail that came bagged. I decided to leave them since it was January and I really wasn't in any shape to take them out and put the, in water. I had received them a few days after major back surgery. Anyhow one rooted and the other started shriveling up so I put it in water and it rooted.

The only cutting to this day that did not root in water for me was Hilo Beauty. I have had horrible luck with Hilo Beauty. Really disappointing for me since I love the dark red flowers! I am going to try one more time sometime this summer and if it does not root for me, I will order one all ready rooted.


    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 6:07PM
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I"ve had a huge Kauka Wilder bagged for a month or more. I just put it in some water with superthrive so we'll see how it goes. I bagged a Sunfire at the same time and it already has a bag full of roots.

So far I have not had much success with water rooting. After a couple of weeks, when the end in water starts to look like it's getting soft, I panic and remove it.

BTW, James, my Bonnie Fox that you gifted me last year will be blooming in a couple of weeks. The weather has been cool but suppose to heat up this coming week. I'm hoping she'll look like she's suppose to! Thanks again!

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 7:25PM
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NJZ7(6 and 3/4)


I just recently purchased my first fresh cutting by error on eBay; normally I purchase rooted cuttings.

I am in zone 7 costal New Jersey, and while the weather is hot to mild here in late August through September, I realize it is not the best time to root a cutting.

I am considering water rooting and I have read a few threads here on the plumeria forum about that method.

My question for Freak is did you follow standard procedure for bag rooting as far as moisture level in the soil mix and other bag rooting procedures?

I have read comments that cuttings water rooted for up to three weeks become somewhat accustomed to moisture and do not respond well to the typical recommendations of very dry conditions once potted up.

I am wondering if you made adjustments to the typical bag rooting procedure to account for this.

Any input, comments or info for a first timer rooting a fresh cutting in NJ zone 7 in late August / September would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,


This post was edited by NJZ7 on Sat, Aug 16, 14 at 10:51

    Bookmark   August 16, 2014 at 10:48AM
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Hi Ron - I'm not Freak but I do believe it was he that previously posted about the importance of keeping a water rooted cutting moist after you pot/bag it up.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2014 at 6:20PM
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virgo1667(10 CA)

How do you do Water Rooting by the way? Just stick the Cutting inside the Bag with water? Is that how it works? can someone please Post a Water Rooting pictures as an example? Ty

    Bookmark   August 19, 2014 at 5:38PM
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Ty, check out this earlier conversation string with pictures:

Personally, I have tried water rooting, keeping the cuttings in water for up to 3 weeks. Most get swelling around the callus end, popcorn bumps on the stem, but after I pot up and put in a warm sunny location, they all go back to normal rooting procedures and I don't see leaves for 2-4 months. Well in all honesty, I have had 2 or 3 exceptions to that rule, but for about a dozen other cuttings it didn't work. In fact, several ended up rotting in the water on me.

So I'm not sure what magic others have doing it this way, but the magic just ain't there for me.


    Bookmark   August 19, 2014 at 6:17PM
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bobthewizard(CA 9)

Hmm. I wonder if the bag method will work for me? I still have a seedling/cutting from the Seedling that didn't know it died (check my previous post on this)
It's still alive, and does have some root buds but no actual root growing. I'm afraid if i put it in the usual 50/50 mix of Cactus mix and perlite I use for all the others, it will dry up and really die....
You can see the 2 root nubs in the picture (and my seedling forest in the background).

    Bookmark   August 19, 2014 at 10:34PM
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Dave in NoVA • 7a • Northern VA

I don't see any advantage to water rooting personally. I just root in plastic cups or bottles with a very porous medium (lots of perlite). Never had any problems with this method. But to each their own!

    Bookmark   August 20, 2014 at 8:18AM
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Those are some healthy looking roots, freak! How exciting!

Very interesting post - brought back a box of cuttings from Hawaii, and I was debating on the best way to go about rooting. I would be interested in your input. Would you attempt to root now? Wait until spring? Some are calloused and ready, but others need to be recut due to some mold that developed on the cut end.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2014 at 2:29PM
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