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Elderberry Cuttings: Do I have any chance of success if the parent is starting to leaf out?

 
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I've been experimenting with trying to propagate an elderberry bush in my yard. It produces a handful of berries, but they're all way up at the top. I'd like to try my hand at propagating it via cuttings. But is it too late if the leaves popped out...literally today? I suspect yes, but I want to pick people's brains on the matter.
 
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I've had best luck when I take cuttings every week or two for several months in a row.  I've only ever taken cuttings from things that were leafed out.  I've had good success.  Best came when I took cuttings of new growth after it started to harden off a little.  If you use new growth cuttings, they should be firm enough to stand up on their own in the sand or whatever you use to root them in.
 
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Trace Oswald wrote:I've had best luck when I take cuttings every week or two for several months in a row.  I've only ever taken cuttings from things that were leafed out.  I've had good success.  Best came when I took cuttings of new growth after it started to harden off a little.  If you use new growth cuttings, they should be firm enough to stand up on their own in the sand or whatever you use to root them in.



Awesome, that's reassuring. I just went to town on a particularly long branch and cut it into about 5 of them. We'll see how much luck I have. I may take my trimmers to work tomorrow and grab a few more as an experiment...there's a bush there too that tends to fruit quite prolifically.

At risk of getting off topic -- can this be done with beautyberry (Callicarpa americana) as well?
 
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If harvesting the old bush is a problem, you can renew the plant by cutting it back all the way to the ground and letting it start over from new canes. That will give you lots of cutting material, and you won't lose much fruit as elderberries actually fruit best on new growth. Canes that are more than 3 years old don't fruit much and can be removed. Typically you would do that in the fall—dormant elderberry cuttings propagate with an almost 100% success rate in my experience. But you can probably still do it now if you don't need performance to be that flawless—my elderberries send up new shoots all summer long, so it's not too late to renew the plant.

 
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