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My inlaws have the most amazing thornless enormous blackberries in their garden. They tried to give me a cutting in the autumn, but it didn’t take at all, and died. They’ve just given me another one, and I’m determined to keep this one going! It’s been in water for nearly a week, and looks like it has some very tiny roots coming at the bottom (Yay!). How long should I leave it in the water - how long will the roots grow in just water? I have got some organic rooting powder - should I pop some in the water, will that help? I got this far with the last one so I don’t want to mess it up now! When I come to planting, do I just dip the roots in the rooting powder and whack it in, or should I be doing something extra?

Angie Sea Glass Jewellery from the beautiful South Coast[/color] , Nannie Cool - for beautiful slings, playsilks, toys, nappy wraps and accessories made by Grace’s Nannie. All designs are “Approved by Grace”

Hopefully those roots will keep growing!  Iir, the rooting powder is a hormone that stimulates rooting.  If you’re getting roots in the water, I’m not sure you’ll need it.  Do as your eyes tell you.

However, when you transition from water to soil do it carefully.  When roots form in water, they have an easy job, and don’t need to form the super tiny root-hairs that allow them to extract water from around the soil particles.  I’m a plant biologist, not a horticulturalist, so I can’t tell you a foolproof way of transitioning (google and/or your local library might be able to help you though).  But I when you get good root formation, I would add soil slowly, giving some roots the stimulation to form those root hairs while others are doing their job in the water.  Definitely do not just pull it out of the water and plop it into the soil.  I would also do this in a pot, in a nice warm sunny place where you can keep pests off of it.

Is the piece you have woody?  Or is it softer green tissue (like a flower stem)?  I’m just curiousl The rooting hormone works best on non-woody tissues.  You can use it on mint leaves (this would include basil and anything else in the mint family)- we used to just cut a leaf in half, dip the cut edge in the hormone, then bury the cut edge (so the leaf is standing upright and mostly exposed) in a pot of soil.  If all goes well, you get a little tiny plant starting up in the middle-ish of the leaf.  Great learning opportunity for the kids!

SAHM to DS- 10/08 and DD 11/10

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