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Question on cuttings.

Posted by tifflj 6 Pitts, PA (My Page) on
Thu, Apr 18, 13 at 13:26

Hi Im Tiffany. Newbie to hydrangeas and out door gardening. I have obtained 3 cuttings from a planter from a funeral basket. What do I need to do to get them to root so that I can plant them in the ground?

Side note: i just bought a house, closing may 1st... So I wont be able to get them into ground if I need to until then.

Thanks!!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Question on cuttings.

Presumably you took cuttings without a flower. Remove all but the top two leafs, make a new stem cut and dip in hormone. Insert in potting mix, a cutting up to about 8 inches will have about 3 inches in the mix. Cover with plastic tent, removing to vent every few days, recover. Should root within a month, remove cover, if no wilting, it is rooted. Al


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RE: Question on cuttings.

Welcome to Pittsburgh (unless you're originally from here) and congrats on your new home!

Key points:
- Make sure there is no trace of flower or it's accompanying small stems. Just leave the main stem below the flower, with at minimum 3 bud nodes along it. Hormone can help but is not necessary.
- Cut leaves down to 50% size or smaller
- No "tent" required. Keep the pot with cutting in as much *shaded* light as possible (e.g. facing north). There can be NO direct sunlight while rooting.
- The best soil mix to use is indeed potting soil but I add some play sand to add a little "weight" to it. Keeps it tighter so the small roots can take hold.
- To see signs of rooting, the stem will start producing new buds and subsequently stems from the bud nodes. That way, you'll know it is now growing.
- Try not to plant a cutting this year. Wait another year or two and switch to a larger pot if need be. A larger plant & rootball will help it survive winters. In the meantime, overwinter the plant once the leaves fall off in a cold place like a garage or in a ditch near a foundation. Keep watered once monthly.

-Andy


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RE: Question on cuttings.

  • Posted by tifflj 6 Pitts, PA (My Page) on
    Fri, Apr 19, 13 at 21:58

Yes, I am from pgh!! Living in Bethel Park.

Here is a pic of what I have to work with. I have 3 of these.


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RE: Question on cuttings.

Yep, get rid of the flower ASAP and trim those leaves down very small. Should be ready to go in a pot then. Looks like that second leaf will be just above the soil line.

You live close to Trax Farms - should check out their stuff sometime if you haven't already. I'm a bit northeast of the city so they're a bit of a haul for me.

Good luck!


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RE: Question on cuttings.

  • Posted by tifflj 6 Pitts, PA (My Page) on
    Sat, Apr 20, 13 at 17:44

Andy, here is a picture of what I did. I took sand and put in bottom of pot for weight and mixed soil with some perlite and vermicu... Something or other..will this work?
I placed in a room with little medium low light and gave it a drink of water.

Please advise if I did something wrong. If not, fingers crossed!

Trax Farms huh? Yeah, my husband banned me from there. I always come home with a new plant. He doesnt understand they just jump in the cart unbenounced to me. Lol.

Thanks for the guidance!
Tiffany


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RE: Question on cuttings.

Looks good! You might wanna cut the leaves to be a bit smaller but that's it. Just keep daily light on them and keep the soil moist. PS What you've got there will end up being one large hydrangea with 3 crowns tangled together. If you want 3 hydrangeas you'll need 3 pots. I personally like doing it the way you did though - its a faster way of growing a larger shrub. Just did this with an F&E White Out last year.

Lol @ Trax. I spent $150 last time I was there so its probably better I'm far away as well. Later!


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RE: Question on cuttings.

  • Posted by tifflj 6 Pitts, PA (My Page) on
    Mon, Apr 22, 13 at 11:33

Today the leaves are wilted and limp...


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RE: Question on cuttings.

You have way too much leaf, cut by more than 50%. If your humidity is low as it is here, between 20 and 30 %, tenting to raise the cuttings humidity would help prevent the wilting. Al


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RE: Question on cuttings.

Also new to hydrangeas... You actually "cut" the leaves? Keeping the same shape I presume?


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RE: Question on cuttings.

With large leaves you should cut right across to reduce the size and slow the moisture loss. I try and avoid taking a cutting from a blooming stem, but if you do, get rid of the bloom. The plant has a priority for using its energy and it goes like this starting from the number one, Flower, Seed, Foliage and Root. With a cutting, we are most interested in starting root growth. The plants energy is stored in the stem of the cutting and we would like it used to start roots. Al


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RE: Question on cuttings.

I did forget one step.... MIST the leaves as frequently as you can (every other day at least). This really seems to help!

Otherwise, it's fine if the remnants of the leaves droop or look limp. As long as the leaves are not completely shriveled up and brown, the stem is still alive. It may look like this for several weeks. As long as you allow zero sun, just make sure the soil is very moist and tightly packed around the stem bases, you should start seeing new leaf/stem growth coming from the nodes along the stem within about a month or so.

That one stem with no leaves to begin with may also start producing leaf buds in about a month.

I've had a 90% success rate rooting in this fashion. So I'd be surprised if at least 2/3 of those didn't make it...


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