When to take Softwood Cuttings:
The best time is spring. This is the time when the plant has just made fresh young and soft shoots. Choose shoots without flowers or buds.
Another time is early autumn. This is the time to take cuttings of less hardy varieties. It’s a way of trying to make sure that your plants will survive severe winters.
How to take Softwood Cuttings:
Cut off a young shoot of the plant just above a leaf node. The shoot has to have at least 3 pairs of leaves. Then on a cutting board cut off with a sharp knife just below a leaf node. The cutting has to be around 8 to10 cm long. Remove the lower leaves.
Dip the base of the cutting into hormone rooting powder (shake off any excess). Put the cuttings into pots or trays of compost. Don’t put them too close together. The leaves mustn’t touch each other.
The cuttings need humid and warm conditions to root. This is achieved by covering them up with a propagator lid or a plastic bag. Keep the temperature between 18 to 21º C (64-70º F).
Once rooted pot them up individually. Keep well watered and don’t expose to extreme temperatures until established.
Problems with Softwood Cuttings
- It could be that the cutting has been over watered. Make sure to water sparingly.
- The cutting could be suffering from stem rot fungi. Make sure the water butt is cleaned and disinfected on a regular basis or use clean tap water instead.
- The temperatures are too low. Keep the cuttings in a warm place away from frost.
- It can also be that the cutting needs nutrition. Feed regularly with a liquid feed (i.e. Phostrogen).
Daisies that can be grown by Softwood Cuttings: