Rooting Roses

Asked January 12, 2021, 7:37 AM EST

I'd like to try to root branches from a bush. When would be a good time to take cuttings and how long should the cuttings be. It's an abandoned rose and not a variety I've seen. It's about 4 feet high with lots of branches, but it has been neglected.

Lane County Oregon

1 Response

Using a cutting from this year's growth hardwood (when the rose is dormant) can be difficult but you could try it now.

Your best chance of success is to use a 6-8 inch section of softwood (newer growth) cut just below a faded flower or hip. You may need to wait until spring/early summer when the rose is blooming to take your cutting.

- Cutting should be 6-8 inches long & about pencil diameter;
- Remove the flower head/hip down to just above the first set of leaves (make this cut at 45 degrees so you can remember which end is the top);
- Remove leaves on the lower part of the cutting (you want the plant to concentrate on growing roots);
- Dip lower end in rooting compound (not required) and place in cutting soil (compost, vermiculite, sand mix) to a depth of 3-4 inches (you can use another stick to open a hole for the cutting);
- Firm up the soil around the cutting and ry to keep it moist by setting up a mini-greenhouse (big plastic bag with a few air holes over the container).