Alright, I'm a novice as well.... Sooooo, for what it's worth:
I've just successfully rooted 4 rose bush stem cuttings myself! **pause for a round of applause for the both of us** - I took 10 cuttings initially, to try a few different methods, and only one of them resulted in rooted rose bushes..... well, maybe "bushes" isn't quite the right word for them (yet), but we're gettin' there!
For the sake of time, I'll just tell you what DID work in detail, and who knows, maybe you'll find a lil' tid bit in there, that you missed or something. I'd like to think that even a beginner, like myself, could be of some help to others here n' there...
4 out of 4 cuttings, were rooted (very well, and quickly might I add. Just 2 weeks and they all had at least 3-6 half inch long roots), using the following techniques:
(1) Prepped the cuttings: Made sure each cutting end had a nice angle to it, then lightly shaved the bark from the nodes down. Removed the upper buds/tips, and also snipped off all but 1-2 branches, with just a few (2-3) leaves left on each branch.
(2) NO ROOTING HORMONE WAS USED ON THE ONES THAT TOOK! I felt that this was a very compelling factor in the details here, because normally, rooting hormone is a very helpful ingredient for me (and many others) when propagating stem cuttings of all plant species...
(3) Poked holes, and placed all 4 cuttings TOGETHER in one, sterilized 4 inch seedling/nursery pot, planter thingy, filled with 50/50 perlite & all purpose potting mix. I was told by a helpful cquaintance, who runs a nursery out in CA somewhere, that placing a few stem cuttings together, in a small pot, not only raises your success rate in propagation, but also speeds up the root growing process quite drastically... because - the plants go into a sort of "fight or flight mode", knowing they only have a limited amount of space to grow in together. This encourages them to compete for the room they need to grow their roots! I'm the kind of person who likes to try all sorts of different techniques, methods and ideas for things, then draw the conclusions based on my own, first hand findings. That being said, the "A few cuttings per pot, is better than 1", theory, is one that I can attest to! I've confirmed it quite a bit more, since the roses too....
(4) Watered em in good... I soaked mine, til water ran out thru the drainage holes, then gave em a minute to drain out excess before moving on to the next and last steps (for the time being anyways)..
(5) Placed the pot in a large, zip lock baggy. You can use gallon sized zip locks, or there's also these real thick, huge (like 2 gallon I think), industrial ones that I feel are worth looking for. They're absolutely reusable too, where they're so sturdy and thick. My husband brings em home from work for me, so I wouldn't know where to find em right off hand, but like I said, worth a quick hunt (maybe online even?). They've been awesome for plant propagation... Nice and spacious, and you'd only need to buy em once!
(6) I zipped the bag, totally air tight, stopped an inch before the end, used that little opening to blow the bag up like a balloon, then finished zipping it the rest of the way, air tight... I'm not sure if blowing in the bag before closing it all the way, actually benefits root growth/success directly, but it definitely does, indirectly. It prevents the bag from flopping down, and keeps it from touching the plants, which is important, cause the condensation from the bag, will rot the leaves and stem, if it's constantly coming in contact with them...
(7) Placed the bag on the countertop, about 6-7 feet, sraight on, from the biggest, brightest kitchen windows in the house.
(8) Waited...... I opened the bag, once a day, to let in fresh air, and spritz/moisten the soil with a spray bottle when it needed it (which wasn't very often where the bag/greenhouse does the work for you - moisture retention). I always blew the bag back up before closing it.
Now, I read all sorts of different opinions with specified instructions, on how long you should wait before checking for roots, and how long it takes before your specimens are "officially rooted", but that part I've more or less just been "wingin' it" I'd say.... I got anxious and dug em all up after 2 weeks, cuz I wanted to physically see what was happening (if anything) with them.... and these 4 I speak of, were already well on their way by that time! The other 6, done a couple different ways = Nothin... I put em back in the dirt tho, and waited out the entirety of the "6 week" time frame, that seems to be most commonly alotted to the ROOTING of new plants. But yep... only these 4 ("The Chose Ones" lol), DIDN'T end up in the trash can by the end of it....
And so here's where I'm at with it now though.... 8 weeks later:
- No idea what to do with em???? They're still right here, in the pot, on the kitchen counter, just chillin! Hangin with the rest of my houseplants! Lol! I took em outta their bag a couple weeks ago, but now I can't seem to find what I'm supposed to do with them? That's how I happened o humble across this post... was hoping to find answers as to where to go from here.... I've found nothing that explains anything beyond the actual ROOTING and propagation process..... So if anyone has any advice/experience/knowledge to contribute on where to go with this AFTER the 6 week rooting/propagation period, I'm sure we'd both appreciate it! I still plan to open a discussion on it, after I finish up here........ this whole "discussion forum" thing sure is handy! I know I really appreciate when people (perfect strangers really) are so willing to contribute their time & efforts, to another perfect strangers gardening life..... it means alot! Nobody HAS to take time out of their day, to stop, and answer all the seemingly "silly questions", that inexperienced, beginner growers like ourselves present to the forum community..... they just do... cuz they're cool like that... and I'm very thankful for it!
So anyways, carry on with those new rose bushes Friend! Before ya know it, they'll be growin' like crazy! So darn big, you'll be pruning em back left & right!
Take care, and one novice to another, HAPPY GROWING!!!!