Thursday, May 29, 2014

Boxwood Cuttings (Revisited)

Here is my original blogpost on boxwoods. Fifty Boxwoods

Today my blog friend Paulette at Cheerful Thrifty Door requested some explanation, so this is the email I sent her:

"My mother thinks we fill our time with crazy things like trying to root boxwoods, but with the cost of even small boxwood plants it is worth a try. And we have been successful both in The Netherlands and here in Louisiana.

In The Netherlands we just had to cut off a 4-6 inch twig, strip off the lower leaves and jab it into the ground where we wanted the plant to grow.

Here in southwest Louisiana, our soil is not so fertile. So we root the cuttings in good soil (usually composted from kitchen scraps and sand and rice hulls/manure). But I have heard of organic farmers who rooted their plants in wet sand.

This is what I do:
1.  Trim back my overgrown boxwoods. (We started several years ago with one $6.00 Korean boxwood from Lowes.)
2.  Prepare a window box or pot with the soil. Some stores sell special rooting soil. Never tried that, since we have "free dirt" and always some compost material.
3.  Make 4-6 inch long cuttings from the boxwood trimmings. Cut off the small branches and lower leaves. You want the cutting to give all its energy to making roots.
4.  I dip each fresh, damp cutting into rooting hormone that I bought at Lowes or Home Depot. So long ago I do not remember. Maybe it was even Walmart! I have read that you can use kitchen cinnamon instead. Never tried that, since my rooting hormone powder has lasted (and worked) so long.
5.  Then I just jab the powder coated end down into the wet soil and keep it moist for many months. You should see new leaves on the top and the stick will be pretty stable in the soil (roots).
6.  When you are ready to plant (early fall or early spring), lift out the rooted plants with a fork or your fingers. Then have fun planting."

Thanks for the request, Paulette. I will count my time as Master Gardener's time ;))). A lot cleaner than getting out in the garden! 


Beth said...

Very interesting post!

Paulette said...

Thanks for taking the time to explain the process, I appreciate it. I believe I will give it a try.

Tracey Radford said...

really interesting - we have a small boxwood hedge that could do with being a bit longer. I also have a little tub of rooting hormone powder that's so old I can't remember where it came from! Never knew you could use cinnamon.