Seedlings - grafting or kept on own roots?

Hi everyone

When you got a nice seedling you want to give another look a year or two, do you then keep them on there own roots or do you graft them onto a rootstock?

I saw in Kordes book “The Rose book” that all his keepers were propagated asap, and afterwards all the seedlings were thrown away.

I wonder what you usually do.

I guess that your real winners will be propagated. But what will you do with the ones, which a first are less gorgeous?

It could also be about having space enough for propagating, I guess.


I do own-root because Im lazy lol. Also, I like to know how they perform own-root because I prefer own-root plants in my garden.

Jadae - until now I also only have mine on own-roots.

But I guess it will be wise to propagate the best ones to have extras, just in case. The winters in Denmark are sometimes cold and could freeze away the seedling.

ah yeah, I dont have that issue. I just make a lot of cuttings in the fall.

I sometimes bud them in order to get mature plants to work with right away.

If you are in a hurry to proceed to the next generation it can be very useful.

Thanks Robert, I guess you live in a warm area, with a long season, when you have this possibility.

But do you still keep a majority of your seedlings on own-roots or do you bud both the good ones and the very best ones?


As the industry is likely to head more towards own root propagation in the decades ahead, I always evaluate seedings on their own roots, although as Robert has suggested, I too will often bud onto another root variety to force the process ahead at a greater pace. But seedlings that do not perform as own root plants are soon eliminated from trials in my garden.



I can echo Paul. One of my criteria for a good seedling is that it does well on its own roots.

I only bud those I want to move along the quickest. The majority are left own-root.

Interestingly I find cuttings made of an original seedling often progress faster than the original seedling for some reason.

Thanks everyone for your replies.

I very much agree with the view, that if a seedling do not do well on its own roots, its not worth keeping!

As garden space for me is more and more a problem, this was very good news :slight_smile:


But if you’re going to bud, please put the bud on virus free rootstock.

So many roses have had RMVs introduced from being budded onto tainted rootstock. Then there is NO clean budwood, whenever the original seedling is destroyed.

In my zone 6/7, RMV is often the reason that roses fail to thrive at three years. And it’s the reason that there are roses I won’t buy because of the reputation of the company that grows them for sale.

i just put a climber seedling outside next to my trellis . i also like own root.

Own root. I wish I had success budding as that would be helpful to use plants sooner.