So a month or so ago i got a number of 4-6” cuttings of small fruit (aronia, honeyberry, mulberry, elder, fig, currant) and have had them in moist coconut coir in individual cups nested into a bed of bark in a galvanized washbasin, topped the whole thing with a layer of bark and covered it loosely to keep out rain, sitting outdoors on a nursery heater on my deck. When ive checked on a few, i can see thru the plastic cup sides that some are indeed rooting. My question is that today when i checked, several of them have started sending out leaves and one was even flowering. Do i need to bring those out of the dark and get them into a coldframe? Should i remove the leaves? Ignore them for a while longer?
Congrats Debbie on your success!
I've rooted lots of hardwood cuttings. I would keep them in cold frame. Protect from any frost. They will need very gradual introduction to outdoor life, no full sun until fully rooted. I would not remove the leaves.
With Figs, I've had times when I put them outside on the deck in the shade during the day, then back inside at night, until risk of frost was gone.
DanielW said. I would keep them in cold frame. Protect from any frost. They will need very gradual introduction to outdoor life, no full sun until fully rooted. I would not remove the leaves.
Thanks so much for the reply, Daniel. So,Just to make sure i understand what you recommend, i should move them from the dark moist environment they are currently in with the bottom heater and into filtered light as each one grows leaves? I dont have a cold frame or greenhouse but I do have a hoop and row-cover tunnel. or i could just uncover the washtub they are in and cover it with the rowcover so they can all stay on the heater. are the ones without leaves still ok being put in the light or would that signal them to stop concentrating on rooting?
You're welcome Debbie,
I think you are right. If they remain in the dark, they ate more likely to grow pale, weak shoots and leaves that will get sunburned when they finally do get light. The new growth needs light to grow strong and provide nutrition to the roots.
If the get full sun too quickly, the pale growth might burn. Gradual change is better, with a little more each day.
If the roots look good, I don't think those need bottom heat. They should then be planted in potting soil and kept will watered.
I think the hoop row cover situation sounds ok as long as they don't get frosted.
The ones without leaves should do ok with the same treatment. They might just be slower to grow leaves.
I hope that helps.