How To Grow Roses From Cuttings
Well, it's mid-winter now and if you grew roses last year most of them will have gone dormant.
However, it is still a good time of the year to consider propagation. In this short blog we will discuss a method of taking rose cuttings and propagating them in a Hydropod Cuttings Propagator. This form of hardwood cuttings propagation is grown entirely without soil.
By growing cuttings this way you mitigate the chance of soil contaminating the cuttings, and you are able to control the temperature using the Hydropod’s in-built heaters.
Winter cuttings should be better prepared because that's their more natural cycle for hardwood cuttings. During mid-winter, most varieties of rose cuttings should be "fully ripened" meaning it's hardened off.
You can grow rose cuttings during any time of the year, but in this instance we will be focusing on winter hardwood cuttings propagation.
When to take rose cuttings
Many plants are very particular about what type of cutting will root, but roses are relatively flexible. Rose cuttings can be taken from the current year's new stems at three key growth stages:
Softwood cuttings, the quickest and simplest to root, are taken in late spring and early summer, when flexible young stems are just beginning to mature. Prime softwood cuttings come from pencil-size stems below rose blooms that have dropped their petals.
Semi-hardwood cuttings are taken in late summer and early autumn, when new stems have partially matured. By this time, the strong stems may have rosehips forming where blooms previously appeared.
Hardwood cuttings, the slowest and most challenging to root, are taken in late autumn or early winter, when the year's new stems have matured, hardened and entered dormancy.
How to choose which rose cuttings to grow
For best results, make sure that you're picking wood that is from the same year of growth so you're not looking for previous years of growth.
Sometimes you'll see across the bottom a bigger thicker, harder stem which is probably from the previous year of this plant's growth. Some people suggest they don’t get great results trying to take hardwood cuttings from that section, so we suggest you take a stem from the same year of growth which is firm and fully ripened.
If a rose cutting is very soft and bendy, this is inappropriate for trying to take hardwood cuttings. That's softwood or semi hardwood.
How to take rose cuttings
The first step will be to cut the rose flowers off. By doing this you're sending the information to the plant that it's time to make roots rather than the flowers. Each cutting can in fact become a separate rose plant.
For best results, look for a cutting which has the thickness and length of a pencil with at least three or four nodes on it. Nodes are simply the places where the leaves came out. It's a little bump on the stem.
Cut just below the node and then go up to about the length of a pencil for each node to make multiple cuttings.
In no more than two weeks buds will actually start to burst out of these nodes which are root buds and from there that will then start to produce the plant.
Placing your rose cuttings into a Hydropod
The Hydropod only takes a penny a day to run it but the results are wonderful. It has a plastic lid, which when comes off reveals a tray, underneath is the water pump that contains six little sprayers which creates a moist atmosphere underneath and dry at the top.
This in turn, promotes the roots to start growing and that is how aeroponic systems work.
All you do is take your cutting and place it into the sponge clone collars, so the bottom of the cutting is going to sit into the water in the damp atmosphere and the top of the cutting will stay dry.
Leave your cuttings in place for 2-3 weeks with the Hydropod switched on. After this time you will notice the roots will start to grow again and the root mass will likely double in size. Once the roots are around 3 inches in length these will now be ready to pot on.
When you pot your cutting on, put some soil in and add the magic ingredient - mycorrhizal powder – this is a fungus that grows in the wild. It extends the plants capability of absorbing nutrients.
For a visual step-by-step guide check out our horticultural expert, Paul Lloyd, taking Papaya Cuttings and placing them in our Hydropod!
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