early propagation of seedlings


how would you proceed to produce a safety clone of a seedling you are especially interested in?

I have one Pauls Himalayan Musk x Westerland seedling I would not want to loose due to cultivation mistakes. It is healthy and has two soft shoots of 20cm and 40cm with diameters of 2-3mm.

What would be the safest way do propagate it in an early stage?

Did anybody grafting of soft rose shoots with methods like in tomatoes?



Werner, you might try approach grafting once the new shoots mature. If you have an extra plant of rootstock, or a vigorous seedling you don’t want to keep because it is just like another, you might approach-graft a cane of the Paul’s Himalayan Musk x Westerland seedling to it.

Really young tissue is very easily damaged, and I’ve never tried to graft a soft shoot to anything. I know what you are talking about when you refer to “like in tomatoes,” but I have not tried it. Tomatoes are a lot easier to replace than rose seedlings.


Unless it’s imperative to propagate it right away, I would wait until you have enough suitable wood at the right stage to attempt propagation.

Hi Werner,

What an exciting cross combination!! I raise my seedlings under lights inside and the one time bloomers tend to throw long stems that I trim back because room is limited. I’ve rooted cuttings easily from this tissue from these seedlings when I wanted more of a special cross to share a copy with someone. A couple node cutting is fine and you can get more cuttings. I root my cuttings under lights with a porous medium (2/3 perlite 1/3 peat or pro-mix). I water it well and often put a plastic baggie below the pot and then one over the pot to keep the humidity high and the extra moisture from the bottom that may come out at times contained. I would put multiple cuttings in a pot and separate them later to save space. If I am in mass propagation mode, I would use plastic inserts or plug trays (50 cell typically) and plastic domes and an individual cutting in each cell. THe baggies tend to be an issue for me. I like the thinner gallon baggies. I think they breathe a little and the little bit of space for air exchange between the lower and upper baggie seems to be important. When I tried larger zip lock bags the plastic is thicker and seems to trap too much moisture and I would have rot issues. Perhaps ethylene builds up inside too much too.

These are just my experiences. Cuttings are so easy that worrying about rootstock and firmness of budwood seems like an extra challenge that would be unnecessary unless you have reason to believe it would be difficult to root or that there is some reason that having it on a rootstock would somehow provide something of benefit.



I will often layer the branches of promising young plants I’ve set out in the garden, this way there’s no worry about losing valuable precious few cuttings available.


You have a lot of excellent advice here. I would suggest one possible alternative that I use: if the plant is flexible enough, bend a cane down to the soil and peg it with 1" of soil over part of it. (Leave the foliage sticking out) Basically, this is a layering technique. If it roots, then you can cut it free later and there you have a backup plant. It is a no risk way to propagate a valuable seedling. It doesn’t always work, but for me it has worked about 7 times out of ten.

Hi Werner,

I agree with Robert, that waiting until you have a bigger plant is a good idea and using any of the above strategies should result in getting copies.

I have grafted brand new seedlings after the first bloom, taking the top 1-2 leaf nodes, and had very good success doing it. It is amazing how well they unite to the understock, even when the bud eyes are very small. I am not recommending this method, but just noting that it does work. I used to do this with seedlings that I liked early on, that I didn’t want to lose. Since then, I have learned that as the seedling grows, it often loses whatever quality that I liked about it or develops disease - so in those cases, propagating early was a waste of time. Also, just waiting a few extra weeks allows the seedling to produce a bigger plant from which you can take material for cuttings without the risk of cutting back a new seedling so much that you kill it from trying to save it!

Jim Sproul


thanks to all for the really excellent advice. I am sure there are several possible ways. My situation seems to be most similar to Davids descrition and I think I will try rooting cuttings. In fakt I allready tried with a similar plant and the cutting looks good sofar.

Still I could not resist and tried a wedge grafting with another plant yesterday evening. It didn

My wedge grafted scion looked promising after 24h. let


where do you made the graft, on the stem of the rootstock or deep on the base (Wurzelhals) of it ? I have a similar plan :slight_smile:




I used a very primitv form of grafting. Choose the shoot you want to graft (scion). Find a shoot of the same diameter at the rootstock. Cut the shoot of the rootstock horizontally then verticaly in the middle of the shoot about 0,5 - 2cm deep (depending on diameter). Cut the scion in a wedge shap (keilförmig) of the same or slightly shorter lenght than the vertical cut in the rootstock. Wedge the scion in the vertical cut of the rootstock and bind or press rootstock and scion together.

I do not recommend this for roses! (although it might have worked in my case)

This method is usually only used for soft shoots like tomatoes, cucumbers etc. I did it with soybean.

I´ll try to put a picture in here the next days if the graft looks still O.K.

today I repotted my Paul’s Himalayan Musk x Westerland and desided to try propagation.

I prepared one cutting and placed into 2/3 perlit 1/3 potting soil.

Additionally I tried two bud grafts on PHM seedling rootstock of last year. My first bud grafts ever in the wrong time of year with delicate material. So all in all not a very reasonable decision.

I Put some pictures in my HMF journal if you are intersted in pictures.

Link: www.helpmefind.com/gardening/guest.php?tab=42


Link: www.helpmefind.com/gardening/l.php?l=99.106996&tab=42

Nice cross Wernersen.

Just for updating:

The cutting didn

3 weeks is ok for the usual T budding (I remove the wood behind the shield)… I leave 5 weeks or more if chip budding is done.

If the wounds have not healed well, I retape and leave for longer until the wounds are properly callused.

Once the wound edges are very well healed with callus, and if the bud has not yet started to shoot out, I like to then create a deep notch about half an inch above the top of the T bud/chip bud. I then also reduce the top growth of the rootstock very substantially, but I always leave a few leaves on the rootstock top to allow circulation up and down (through) the budded point to keep it alive.

Never be in too much of a hurry to force the bud until you are very sure all the cut edges are well callused over, especially if it is such precious material.