Martibou
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Joined: Sun Nov 25, 2012 9:09 am

lilac cuttings

Hello,
I need some help with a lilac cutting I took. I live in Michigan and took a cutting of my grandmothers lilac at the end of May. I used root hormone and planted it in peat, pearlite and vermiculite mixture. I kept it moist and covered with a clear 2 litre bottle. I just noticed green buds finally start to show up now (the middle of November). I planted it in a pot with Miracle Grow potting soil. It had 2 small roots on either side of the stem, but when I planted it, the one side broke. It now only has the 1 small root attached so I dipped the broken side into root hormone and planted it into the potting mix and covered it back up with the clear bottle. Now, the green buds that WERE there are not green anymore!!! Did I kill it or is it maybe just in shock from transplanting it? Also, I am not sure what to do from this point forward. I feel like I am extremely lucky that I even got it to sprout roots so, I hope I haven't killed it now :( Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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ElizabethB
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Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 5:53 am
Location: Lafayette, LA

Hey Martibou,

Start over. Take several cuttings - 6" - 8" long and the diameter of a pencil. Make your top cut dtraight just above a leaf node. Make your bottom cut at an angle just below a leaf bud. Prepare your pots - I use 3/4 - 1 gallon nursery pots for propagation. Fill with all purpose potting soil to within 1" of the top of the pot. Plant your cutting 1/2 in the soil. You can use root hormone if you like but it is not necessary. For the first watering saturate the soil. Water daily. Soil needs to be consistantly moist but not soggy. OOPS - forgot to check yoour location. Be right back
Elizabeth - or Your Majesty

Living and growing in Lafayette, La.

When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

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ElizabethB
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Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 5:53 am
Location: Lafayette, LA

Ok so you did not specify your region. Makes it a little difficult to give good advice. Keep your cuttings under cover like a patio cover or dense tree. Keep it moist. If a hard freeze is predicted bring it in over night and put it back outside in the morning. When you take your cutting - no leaves. It will take 2 - 3 months for your cuttings to root. When your plant begins to leaf out you need to provide some sun. Keep it moist. After the last frost you can plant in your bed. Dig a wide hole. Only as deep as the original planting but several times wider. Do not pack soil over the existing soil line.

Hard wood cuttings are the easiest way to propagate plants.

Happy gardening.
Elizabeth - or Your Majesty

Living and growing in Lafayette, La.

When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

Martibou
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Joined: Sun Nov 25, 2012 9:09 am

I live in Michigan and I do not plan on planting this outside any time soon. I am just trying to get it to start growing right now. It has a one inch root on the end already, do you think it will be ok?

Martibou
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Joined: Sun Nov 25, 2012 9:09 am

Sorry, I didn't specify that I have had it indoors since I cut it back in May. It has been in the pearlite, peat and vermiculite mix since then and I just repotted it into the soil last week. Hope that helps :)

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ElizabethB
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Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2012 5:53 am
Location: Lafayette, LA

If you planted in May you should have some leaf production. Your cutting should be well rooted by now and producing leaves. If not then you may have lost your cutting. Try again - take several cuttings.

LOL
Elizabeth - or Your Majesty

Living and growing in Lafayette, La.

When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

cynthia_h
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Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 11:02 pm
Location: El Cerrito, CA

What she said--take multiples. Don't pin all your hopes on one cutting; it's simply not in the nature of gardening success for a single cutting/seedling/plant to survive.

Give yourself several to choose from; that way, you can select from the strongest (i.e., most successful) new plants when it's time to get them into the soil.

I'm sooooo envious--lilacs. Ahhhh. The supposedly "warm-tolerant" lilacs simply don't understand Bay Area weather. I've had one for several years in my only location remotely similar to what they want, but no dice. No flowers, minimal growth. The leaves are nice, though....but not fragrant. :lol:

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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