Looking for Crape Myrtle Rooted Cuttings

immobilus(9a)November 17, 2012

I've been trying for a year now to root cuttings from my young crape myrtle with zero success. I was wondering if anyone has some rooted cuttings (preferably dormant) they would be willing to send me I would appreciate it...

Any color will do but looking for larger breeds.

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

have you been trying the rooting on any scientific basis.. or just winging it??? .. in other words.. have you researched it..

0% success.. surprises me ..

ken

Here is a link that might be useful: they say its easy ....

    Bookmark   November 17, 2012 at 4:03PM
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immobilus(9a)

I've followed every instruction I've found online, from propagating indoors in a bag (leaves fall off and stem dies), outdoors in a pot of vermiculite, directly in the ground, etc. even tried root division, but the roots never produced suckers once separated from mother plant. I've tried softwood, hardwood, everything. Nothing.

I have three hardwood stems (pencil thick) in vermiculite now. Been in there a month. No growth. Scratch of the exposed wood shows slight green under bark, no root growth.

I've tried with powdered hormone and no hormone. Soil, sand, and vermiculite. I've tried adding b1 root starter a month into the process, no results.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2012 at 5:20PM
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squirrellypete(z7b AL)

Immobilus,

I don't know what zone you're in. I am in zone 7a/7b. I root my crape myrtles in coarse construction grade sand from tip cuttings in warm weather (late spring through early fall). I mist the leaves frequently and they are usually well-rooted within 3-4 weeks. Softwood seem to do better for me. For crape myrtles I strip the bottom 3/4ths of the leaves. If the sand starts to dry out I water it as well. The coarse sand allows water to drain and the cutting is less-likely to rot, however you have to make sure to water the sand itself occassionally and don't let it dry out, it should be moist. Mostly you focus on keeping the leaves misted, that's how you keep them happy until roots can form. The moist medium is mainly so the cutting stays upright. Some successful cuttings will still lose all their leaves only to sprout new ones if a root system was able to develop.

I've never tried the bag method or sticking cuttings straight into the ground unless something already has a small root attached. As for vermiculite, whenever I used to work with it I found it compressed too much and retains way too much water which again is more likely to promote rotting of the cutting. Maybe some folks have had success with it but I haven't. That was the first method I tried when I got into cutting propagation years ago. I found it to be unreliable and costly when compared to sand or some other more coarse media. Some people also use Perlite. Now if you mixed the vermiculite with something that has larger particles it might work better

With crape myrtles, I have probably an average of 85 - 90% success with the sand and misting method. Depending on the time of the year and conditions sometimes I'll have 100% success with some batches. But if you do try the sand it should be coarse builder's sand to properly drain, not that really fine stuff you buy in bags at the store.

Good luck, all I can say is keep trying.
Danielle

    Bookmark   November 21, 2012 at 3:39AM
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immobilus(9a)

You'll be happy to know I finally got some to root. They were hardwood cuttings, about pencil thick. They haven't grown any leaves yet but I pulled them up and they have about inch-long white, thick, strong roots. Since the hardwood was leafless and couldn't feed itself and with no root action, I took a teaspoon of cane sugar and a b-complex pip and blended it in water. I then added about a teaspoon to each cutting.

Three weeks later, most rooted (after two months of them sitting without roots. One is somewhat rotten, so I pulled it out, cut deep into the pulp with a knife found the layer with the slightest hint of green, and placed it back in. They're in mycorrhizae enhanced growing medium indoors. In about a week I'm going to put a light application of osmocote.

One, the pink valour, was just a 1/8 of an inch twig. I've pulled it up and it hasn't rooted, but there is now a shoot coming up. I wanted to see if the shoot (very fragile) rooted so tugged on it and it broke from the root. Nothing but green still attached. I thought I killed it but replanted it in the pot and its still growing and recently got its third set of leaves.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2013 at 12:07PM
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kayjones(Mo6b)

Yea!!!!!

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 7:16AM
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carino2010(8)

Crape Myrtle root cuttings are easy to grow. I have had great success with them in the pass. Suggestion, don't over water and plant the cuttings in the beginning of spring and leave them alone. I have just stuck them in the ground about two to three inches deep and after four to five weeks, new growth can be seen. My cuttings are pencil thick and approx. six to eight inches high.

Good luck

    Bookmark   February 10, 2013 at 8:06PM
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immobilus(9a)

Yea, I kept getting told that semi-hardwoods or green wood (new growth tips) were easiest. I could not get a single one to grow. I tried bags, they'd mold. I'd try without bags, they'd wilt. I finally said screw it and took hardwood cuttings, some pencil then and some just lateral twigs that grew prior to first frost. I just stuck them in "GroMix" growing medium, which is made of perlite, peat moss, and mycorrhizae fungus. Took upwards of two months, and the hardwood cuttings themselves are not leading out. Instead, they're sending shoots from the cutting which is mostly beneath the soil. I don't even see that much in the way of roots, either. I think the hardwood has essentially become the root. I just transplanted then to a potting soil with fertilizer.

Anyway one know how long a red dynamite crape myrtle should take from being a shoot on a hardwood cutting to be a semi-woody tree/bush that can brave the elements outdoors? Six months? A year?

I'm anxious to see these babies grow!

    Bookmark   February 16, 2013 at 9:52PM
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shear_stupidity(9B)

I absolutely don't know for sure, so don't quote me, but my neighbor lady gave me a baby Crape Myrtle that she rooted from her own plant. She said it had been in the pot for "6 months to a year" and was "ready to go outside."
I hadn't been expecting this new plant, so I had no spot in mind for it. I just left it in the 6" pot it came in and parked it on the side of the house until I could find a place. 6 months later, it had gone from 4" tall to 3' tall!
That was last Spring. The same "baby" is now in the ground and is about 6' tall.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2013 at 4:44PM
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