Gooseberry Plants From Hardwood Cuttings
Plants reproduce via seeds and pollen, root cuttings and runners and many can even reproduce via stem cuttings. Rooting plant cuttings is a relatively simple technique of increasing your herbaceous inventory. The process requires little more than a few basic tools, a decent medium, suitable container and some diligence.
Gooseberries can be propagated from stem cuttings but there are a few tips and techniques you might want to read up on first.
1. You should time your gooseberry cuttings correctly, during the plantís dormant season. The best times are right after leaf drop in Autumn or just prior to the buds opening in early spring.
2. Cuttings from gooseberry should be hardwood cuttings not softwood.
3. Do not take cuttings during unusually cold weather.
4. Select healthy vigorous year old shoots. The cutting[s] should be 5 to 8 inches in length. Cuttings should be taken from a healthy and well hydrated plant. A dry, aged and Desiccated cutting does not allow for the process of cellular regeneration that takes place in cuttings. Dawn is the best time to take a cutting.
5. Trim off any tender new growth near the tip. The tip cut should be at an angle, slightly slanted and just above a bud.
6. The bottom cut, the part that was attached to the plant should also be cut near a bud but just below it.
7. Slice a very thiner of bark at the the very base of the cutting, just enough to expose the cambium.
Unlike softwood cuttings, hardwood cuttings from plants such as gooseberry do not root well in water. They should be planted in a suitable medium and container deep enough to accommodate about twice the length of the cutting.
Suitable Mediums are coconut coir, coarse sand, even potting mix with lots of perlite and or vermiculite, peat blended with perlite. or blends such as a mixture of equal parts of peat and Perlite or part peat and sand. Adding a little compost is advisable. A 50 / 50 blend of perlite and vermiculite works for softwood cuttings as it allows for hydration and oxygenation of the developing roots, I haven't had as much success with it for hardwood cuttings however.
1. Fill your container loosely with the Medium.
2. Dip the bottom of your cutting in the rooting hormone powder. Rooting Hormone is advisable for hardwood cuttings, it does improve your odds tremendously. It enhances your success rate and expedites the plants progress.
3. Insert the cutting into the medium / soil mixture already in the container. Insert roughly half the length of the cutting into the mix, you should have plenty of space to spare at the bottom of the container. The medium soil mix should also be loose enough where there is minimal resistance when you drive the cutting into it , but sturdy enough to support the cutting.
4. The cuttings should be kept in a sheltered location such as cold frame or greenhouse or indoors. The cutting should not be in direct sunlight it needs some light but a shaded or dimly lit area is best in the beginning. Placing a clear plastic bag with small slits over the plant and container allows the plant to breathe while retaining as much moisture as possible from the plants respiration.
5. They should be kept moist but not sitting in water continuously. Hardwood cuttings should develop roots over the plants normal dormant season and be ready to plant at the end of the next season.
6. Before transplanting to its permanent location, would be advisable to harden it off first.
Once transplanted to their permanent location they should be treated as a sapling. Take it easy on the fertilizer and water generously but not so much that you rot out the roots it took months to grow. Vigorously control weeds that are competing with the young transplant for moisture and nutrients.
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