Angel Trumpet/Brug: What to do with your stick

msbattOctober 23, 2006

Most of the folks who attended the MTPS went home with one or more brugmansia "sticks". As promised, here are instructions on what to do now that you have your stick. (*grin*)

If your stick is long, you can either root it as it is, or you can cut it up into several smaller sticks. Keep them about 8" long, minimum. If your stick has a fork at the top, and if you wish to cut it into smaller pieces, leave at least 12" BELOW the first fork. This piece is already 'primed' to flower.

Place your stick in NO MORE THAN 3" of water, no matter how long your stick may be. More water equals a better chance of rotting instead of rooting. Place your stick in a warm, bright spot, and change the water every 2-3 days for the first month. By this time, you should have roots.

You can either maintain your cutting in water until 'mater-plantin' time in spring, or you can pot it up. Either way, you're not likely to get any significant growth before about February, and if you have several sticks, keeping all of them together in one container of water takes up a whole lot less space than potting them does.

Come spring, you can either plant them directly in the ground, or you can pot them. Planting in the ground will give you bigger plants faster, and most folks in TN can expect them to overwinter in the ground most years. Those in the colder parts of TN might benefit from the bucket method that my brother, TnGreenThumb, uses in Nashville. He plants his brugs in 3-gallon buckeets. He drills 1" holes around the sides---but NOT the bottoms!---of these buckets, then plants bucket and all. Come fall, he cuts around the outside of the bucket and lifts his brugs for overwintering in his basement.

Brugs prefer morning sun and shade during the hottest part of the day. When leaving them in the ground, you need to choose a site that's well-drained, especially during the colder months. Cold + wet = root rot.

If you have questions, just ask!

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tngreenthumb(z6 TN)

And just to illustrate the above points.... Pictures!

The drilled bucket method: Here you can see a young cutting about to be transplanted from it's winter home to a pot to go into the ground. 05/23/03

First bloom, 6/23/03

Really putting on a show, 8/21/03

Pruning Day: This is how I cut mine back. I like to keep at least two Y's. Sometimes three.

Bucket Closeup: As you can see, the roots grow right on out through the holes and anchor the plant in the ground very well.

Rooted sticks: Full trunks all the way down to tips can be rooted. Generally, the harder wood cuttings root easier than the green wood, but each individual plant may have it's own peculiarities. Just pay attention and try something else if they start to rot. Check often in the first few days to see how they handle it.

I think it works pretty well if you can handle the plants when they get this big. *grin*

    Bookmark   October 23, 2006 at 9:28AM
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Jan_Hobbs(z6a TN, USA)

Thanks both of you for the seems *someone* left a bunch of *sticks* at the campground after the swap :)and Jim brought them home...I now have them in water.


    Bookmark   October 23, 2006 at 5:34PM
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cannahavana(z7a Knoxville)

Now don't let that picture fool you...Joe is only 3 foot tall.


    Bookmark   October 23, 2006 at 8:23PM
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Jan_Hobbs(z6a TN, USA)

Judith, evidently someone you traded with decided they didn't want your *sticks*, cause they all have your name on them. *grin*

    Bookmark   October 24, 2006 at 12:06PM
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tngreenthumb(z6 TN)

Rebecca: No... That's Jeff.

Jan: I promise I didn't leave any. Now I'm not saying I didn't wander around and drop a few into deserving swappers take home piles... But I didn't abandon any.

    Bookmark   October 24, 2006 at 4:13PM
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doxiecityga(Zone 7)

Hey, I was wondering can you really take a limb off of the angel tree and place in water, then later have roots? I didn't think it would work? Ours hasn't put out much leaves and no flowers we don't even know what color of the flowers are. Can you help us? Should we leave in indoors or leave outdoors?

    Bookmark   August 14, 2008 at 8:57PM
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