TAKING HARDWOOD CUTTINGS
Taking a cutting now may save a treasured plant
WINTER is a hard time and there are no certainties that every plant will see it through to the other side. If you have a tree, shrub or climber you are especially fond of, it is worth taking cuttings of it now in case it succumbs over the next few months.
Hardwood cuttings are taken from this year’s growth that has had time to mature and harden. This method of propagation is slow (cuttings may take up to a year to develop sturdy root systems) but is one of the most reliable.
You can take hardwood cuttings any time from now until late winter, though the best times are just after leaf fall or shortly before the buds burst in spring.
Don’t mess with the cuttings once they are starting to put on growth. Leave them until next autumn to avoid disturbing the roots and disrupting their progress.
When you make your cuttings, cut the top end on a slant so water droplets will run off and not accumulate.
For hardwood cuttings take pencil-thick pieces of this year’s healthy growth