More Success in Propagation

Last night I potted up a few more successfully propagated plants. While none of the cuttings were difficult by any means, I’m always pleased when I have a few more viable plants to add to the garden. The plants still need a little more time to develop their root systems, but they were ready to move into soil from the sand. In this batch of cuttings I have 2 hydrangeas (Hydrangea macrophylla), a red flowering honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens), two ‘Purple Homestead’ verbenas, and three white candytufts (Iberis). The candytufts didn’t have any roots yet so I’ll left them in the sand to root a while longer. A caterpillar got to them early and removed all the leaves so they may not make it at all.

Here is the root system of one of the hydrangeas. It’s diameter is somewhere between a quarter and a half dollar in size. The sand clumped around it makes the roots a little hard to see. I don’t take the chance of disturbing the roots too much by knocking the sand off. I just plant them like they are.

Here’s the root system of the ‘Purple Homestead’ verbena. Verbenas of all kinds root very easily!

The honeysuckle was my indicator that the roots were formed. In the picture you can see a leaf bud forming. New growth is generally, but not always, a sign that roots gave grown. The mother plant for this honeysuckle grows at my parents house. When working with a nearly empty landscape (like our property was when we bought it) it sure helps to have people nearby willing to give you plants or cuttings!

After I pried the honeysuckle cutting up from the sand with a fork I found this root system. As you can see it’s about two glove fingers wide. I don’t think that’s an official measurement of any kind but if we use feet to measure stuff in the U.S. why not fingers? Just be glad I didn’t use my toes!

Here are the five new plants in their temporary homes. I’ll grow the hydrangeas in pots, well away from bunny rabbits, until they need transplanted. I need to find a spot for the honeysuckle an arbor might make a good home. One of the verbenas needs to be planted next to the mailbox to replace the one that died but I haven’t decided where the second cutting will go. Maybe I should start a verbena garden on our slope…not a bad idea!

6 Replies to “More Success in Propagation”

  1. If it’s possible to have almost all of your garden plants the off spring (?) of your propagating…I am certain you will accomplish that!

  2. Making cuttings of plants was one way that I got my garden started. Now, sometimes I propagate plants just to see if I can do it. My daughter is the beneficiary of most of those.

    Always Growing

  3. Someday when your garden is old and mature and someone asks you where all the plants came from, you can proudly tell them you propagated them all and stars will shine in their eyes for sure.

  4. Dave, you are definitely the Prince of Propagation! Well done.

  5. Its a long process certainly . But planting a tree is as close you can go to your own humanity.

  6. Gail,

    I’m not aspriing to that but it is a great way to get cheap plants! (spoiler for an upcoming Thrifty Gardener Post)


    Some of the time I’m just experimenting also. The learning of how to do something is as important to me as getting a viable plant from the experiment. I’m sure your daughter appreciates it!


    That would be cool. Of course I’ll just be happy if the garden looks good, even if I didn’t propagate them all!


    Thanks for the title but I’m still learning! Any plant I can get my hands on I’ll try.


    Planting a tree does go a long way to sustaining our humanity and our world. It definitely is important.

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