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Issues with Cuttings? Help

 
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I was going to start propagating some trees and bushes by cuttings but I read hear there might be issues with cuttings such as the plant may not grow their normal tap root. Is there a thread on permies that describes the cons of cuttings? I was going to get the cuttings going in 1 gallon buckets and plant in the Nevada high desert. I'm hoping a cutting doesn't prejudice the plants ability to survive.
 
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Hi David,
I suspect that it probably depends on the tree in question. Some don't take readily from cuttings anyhow. We have several threads on Permies where people are 'greening the desert' with seeds; Konstantinos' thread for example.  The idea is that you plant lots and those that survive will be tougher and need less coddling. However, most fruit trees don't some true from seed, so you will end up with new varieties - although future grafting can be a possibility.
In a tough environment larger transplants will need more support to get going when planted out. Hopefully people with more experience in desert areas will chip with more helpful advice.
 
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Well.... a seed started plant tends to have a better root system. A seed started tree that is started in a pot will place some stress on the root system when it is transplanted, possibly breaking the taproot. So ideally we would all start our seeds in the place where we want the tree to grow. I live in a region that wants to be a forest. I don't direct seed, because I would forget to water, forget where all my seedlings are and mow them down, or a multitude of other horrible things. I can't imagine I would have any success direct seeding in the desert!

By the way, I currently have 18 cuttings of 2 varieties of blueberry, and 8 cuttings of aronia in pots, and 75 cuttings of willow in the ground.

I'd plop those cuttings you have in their pots. I think there is no wrong way to propagate a plant.
 
David Barrett
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Thanks. The property I hope to get in a month is pure sand with minimal grass and maybe a couple different types of rabbitbrush. It is zone 6b, perhaps 7a. Im eager to see if chestnut and hazelnut will grow but I want to make sure cuttings don't get me roots that wont go down more than 4-5 feet so they blow right over.
 
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We have only done cuttings for hybrid poplars.

Here is a thread where folks listed trees they have done with cutting.

Also, this is a good suggestion:

Scott says, Rooting hormone is suggested for some propagation.  If you have willow you can use that as a rooting hormone.



https://permies.com/t/71667/Propagate-cuttings
 
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Like Joylynn, I have a lot of recently planted willow cuttings. One of the benefits of having willow around is the compounds they release can help other cuttings root. If you're putting your cuttings in a bucket of water to stimulate rooting, add some willow cuttings to the bucket. They'll share their awesomeness with the other plants and give them a better chance at survival.

j
 
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Hi David. Whether a plant will grow from cuttings totally depends on the type of plant. You'll be more successful taking the right type of cuttiing for your plant (soft growing tip, softwood, hardwood), at the right time of year for it, and using the right medium for it (e.g., water, sand, pumice, garden soil, etc.) Rooting hormone helps in most cases unless you are using water as the rooting medium. Some plants also root better using airlayering or by burying some of the live branches in the ground. It all depends on the plant. I don't know of any central source for that kind of imformation but I'm sure you can find the information you need for the plants you want to propogate on the internet. In doing so, I'd suggest finding a few different, reputable-looking sources that agree as the right method for your plant.

As to a plant not developing a proper root structure when it's grown from a cutting, I don't think that's accurrate. The root structure can and will be impacted if the potted plant is not watered properly or is allowed to get root bound, or if it is not transplanted carefully.
 
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It depends on the tree.  Some do better from cuttings. Some do better from seed.  There are some good propagation handbooks with tables.   I borrowed mine from the local library but I have to give them back when I'm done.

I would rather have an imperfect tree now than a perfect one at some unknown time in the future.
 
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