THE PROPAGATION OF RHODODENDRONS BY STEM CUTTINGS
I have been propagating rhododendrons from stem cuttings for the past 20 years. In the past it was a matter of luck in regard to the percentage of rooting obtained. However, with the aid of mist, polyethylene, and hormones, the percentage of rooting has increased and is consistent from year to year. Despite these new aids we have to adhere to the basic principles such as the time of taking the cuttings, the medium and amount of bottom heat applied.
I consider it of primary importance to have a stock block of plants to provide an ample number of healthy cuttings. We take our cuttings from mid November to mid December, since this time of the year seems to work out well for the rooting of most varieties. A cutting of about one quarter inch in thickness and from two to two and one half inches in length is used. Three or more medium sized leaves are generally left on a cutting, although if the leaves are quite large we trim off a portion of the leaf. Cuttings are then heavily wounded,
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