Ever been given a bouquet of roses, only to feel sad seeing it wilt after a couple of weeks in a vase? Why not make good use of those long stems and grow your own rose garden? You can do so much to make a gift memorable and you can start by learning how to grow rose plant from stem. Though this may prove to be a challenging endeavor, it is never a bad thing to give it a try.
When starting a rose garden from stems, you will need rose cuttings (of course!), pruners, container or planter, potting mix, rooting hormone, plastic bag or newspaper, and can or glass with water. To begin, here are important tips to ponder upon.
1. Consider the time of the year to start growing roses. While some think that summer is a good time for flowery blooms, roses have more chances of rooting during the cooler months. Spring time is the best while early autumn may also be a viable option– all depending on which hemisphere you’re in. The idea is to use stems from a rose bush that had recently flowered for a higher chance of success.
2. Use sharp and clean pruners when cutting stems off a rose. The one below from Fiskar’s make a great companion when growing roses and other cut blooms from stem. Make sure to remove flower and leaves leaving only the 2 leaflets at the top then, cut the stem around 8 inches long. Your stem will need to “feed”. Those leaves on top will usher nutrients from the sun via photosynthesis.
3. Place cuttings immediately inside a glass or tin container with water to keep moisture on them. “Water is life” applies to all living things, and roses are no exception. This helps to also increase survival chance of those stems to take root. This is even more so when growing a rose plant from stem during dry or summer months.
4. With your Fiskars pruners, it is now time to prepare those stems for rooting. In order to do so, make a slit on the stem’s bottom, just below its bump. Create around one-fourth inch shallow cut then, soak it into a rooting hormone. This will allow the stem to gather nutrients from a rooting hormone powder. The Garden Safe TakeRoot Rooting Hormone powder, for instance, makes an excellent choice for cut blooms. These rooting hormones stimulate any plants to develop new roots faster.
5. Transfer soaked cutting into a potting mix. Poke a hole using a pencil or any probing material into the mix to house the hormone-powered stem. See to it that the hole is around half of the stem’s length. Don’t just use soil from your yard though when growing roots. A good potting mix, like the Espoma AP8 8-Quart Organic Potting Mix below, is made from composted organic materials powered with Myco-Tone water-saving formula that not only enhances retention of moisture to promote healthy root growth, but also eliminates stress from drought. To finish, slowly enclose the stem by gently pushing the soil around your rose cuts.
Note: Planting different types of roses? Label each with the name of the rose bush where it was taken.
6. Cover the planted stem with a clear plastic or a newspaper. To hold off the cover, simply place a long stick to ensure that it does not touch the stem. Be reminded that frequently wet leaves can easily invite disease-causing fungi. Though make sure that air flows freely to prevent stem from rotting.
7. Leave it for a couple of weeks, but remember to water it everyday. Check for any signs of rooting by gently tugging the stem. Resistance to your shaking movement will give you an idea if rooting begins or not. Once roots are evident, it can now be transferred to your backyard garden, if any. They can also be transferred to a recycled self-watering container. The idea is to ensure adequate exposure to the sun without wilting.
Without a doubt, learning how to grow rose plant from stem is no easy feat. You can check out a hands-on tutorial to make it more convenient. It is important to remember though that some of the stems may wilt or die into oblivion. The idea, however, is to never stop trying.