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help, how long should cuttings be covered?

Posted by susz52 5a Ont Ca (sredman@cogeco.ca) on
Thu, Jun 18, 09 at 23:21

I am challenging myself to learn one new trick every year in gardening. I bought a new rose bush called Memorial Day and it had a thick branch broken. Not to waste the oppourtunity I cut it into 3- 5 inch pcs with two sets of leaves left. I put them in a small pot of peat moss and barely dampened the whole thing and put pot and all into a zip lock bag and placed in with my other plants in a south facing window. Now 4 weeks later two have rooted and one I threw out. How long should I leave these cuttings in the zip lock? It should not require a green-house environment for long once roots have formed or does the root ball need to fill the pot first? As you can tell I didn't do my research first, I just did what works with other stuff. I will do it differently from now on. Thank You.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: help, how long should cuttings be covered?

first, bravo!!! next, harden them off. just open the zip lock a bit, for 2 hours. if that works, next day open for 8 hours. if that is o.k. than keep open for 24 hours. this will encourage the cutting to grow roots. you do not want the roots to be too tangled, so let them grow for another 2 weeks, until they are growing into the peat pot, and then separate them using kitchen fork (cut the peat pot with a razor type utility knife first) and then pot each rooted cutting up. since you are zone 5, ontario, you have a choice:
grow them on outdoors, except we are now almost past the solstice, or if you have suitable indoor conditions, you can grow them on FOR THE ENTIRE WINTER INDOORS, which I did, and then you have a nice HUGE plant next year, which will reward you +++. I am in zone 4b and way north of you, so growing them indoors yielded huge benefits, but I would also recommend it for you, all u need is a couple of shoplights from wally world, which you can keep going 24/7 over the winter, which will cure you if you have any seasonal affective disorder (LOL!) And last of all --- bravo!!!
Oh, and I forgot, did I say bravo!!!?


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RE: help, how long should cuttings be covered?

Thank you for the 'Bravo', it is more 'ohm'god it worked'. I have two metal green houses with plastic covers [usually off], cheap at Canadian Tire and I have small fluorescent lights I can attach, which I use for starting seeds. Can I assume it is the same light height requirements so you don't get gangly growth and lights on 24/7 ? The greenhouses sit in front of a sliding glass door with south exposure. I over winter geraniums, lantanas and whatever I fancy at the time in the greenhouses. I've had the same spike for 5 years. What about fertilizing: age? or is it size? I better get it right after managing it in the first place and I will follow your suggestions. My mother is eying these cuttings already. I would like to try some more while I'm at it, should I repeat or try some other simple method? Any suggestion appreciated, I find this fascinating and good way to garden into the winter time just as you said. Thank you for answering me, it made my day.


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RE: help, how long should cuttings be covered?

I learned basically from website - look for "Cheryl Netter", and "George Mander" George is Canadian, and is an expert at cuttings. Lighting should be 30 watts per square foot fluorescent t8, lamp within few inches of top of plant. Lights on 24/7, after they have rooted. I use 12/12 for first 2-3 weeks while callus/roots are forming, because they don't need all that much light yet, and possibly the temperature cycles with the light cycle, which may be helpful, just something I've observed. Fertilizing by size, follow directions of Miracle Grow (soluble) with trace elements. Don't over feed. For cuttings, I use 4" peat pots myself, and the medium can be something like pro-mix mixed with one third part sand for better resistance to fungal overgrowth. Possibly other media are also good, I am going to experiment with Christmas tree compost.
Medium should be damp and not soggy, and cuttings need high humidity or they will die before they root. Temperature should be 70-75 degrees F, buy a thermometer from Wally Mart to be sure.


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RE: help, how long should cuttings be covered?

I have the thermometer and the feeding makes sense. Even though it is summer, these rooted cuttings need 24 hrs of light? Did I understand you correctly? I had not thought to do that. I am leaving the zip lock open for a few hours and there have been no averse effects. Thanks for your advice. If I have to leave lights on I may put off further experimentation till fall.


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RE: help, how long should cuttings be covered?

go to the growing under lights part of this forum, and open the thread that says "consequences of lights on 24/7"
the plants grow about twice as huge with 24 hour lights. if you are growing indoors, this makes most efficient use of your facilities.


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