Gardeners love the disease-resistant, long-blooming, and low-maintenance nature of the Knock Out rose (Rosa x ‘Radrazz’). To grow them, all you need to do is take a cutting and plant it in soil to encourage root growth. Rooting hormone can considerably increase your chances of successfully growing roses from cuttings, according to Texas A&M University Extension.
A Note on Legality
Many people will tell you that it is unlawful to propagate Knock Out roses from cuttings if you look online for guidance. That was once true. The Conrad-Pyle Company in Pennsylvania developed the Knock Out rose cultivar. The cultivar was developed over a period of 15 years, during which time the company applied for a patent to safeguard its work.
Even if you wanted to grow Knock Outs for your own garden, you couldn’t do so because of this patent. Patents, on the other hand, are only valid for a period of 20 years and cannot be prolonged. In January 1999, Conrad-Pyle patented Knock Out roses. The patent on Knock Out rose cuttings expires in January 2019, making it permissible for gardeners to take cuttings of their beloved roses.
How to Root a Knock Out Rose
Step 1: Take a Cutting
The optimal time to take a rose cutting for most home gardeners is from November to February. If you want the greatest results, use a fresh stem that has just begun to bloom. An ideal candidate is a stem with a wilted flower or rose hips still attached to it.
- Your chosen stem should be free of any wasted flowers or rose hips. The first healthy set of leaves should be all that remains.
- Cut the stem at the point where it branches off from the remainder of the plant, following the stem down from these levels. A 45-degree angle and clean pruning shears are all you need to get the job done right. Make sure your pruning shears are free of plant diseases by wiping them off with a little alcohol if you’re unsure where they were previously used. The length of your cut should be between 6 and 8 inches.
- If you plan on spending a long period of time in the garden or transporting your cuttings before preparing them, put your rose cutting in some chilly water. Plant them as soon as possible to increase their chances of rooting, but don’t let them dry up while you wait.
Step 2: Prepare and Plant the Cutting
A little rooting hormone powder applied to your Knock Out rose cutting can boost your chances of rooting success. It’s also a good idea to start your cuttings indoors. However, immature plants should be kept out of direct sunlight until they are established. Indoors, the growing conditions can be more easily controlled.
- Make sure to remove all leaves from the lower two-thirds of your cutting.
- Rooting compound powder can be placed on a plate or countertop and rolled around the bottom of the stem to help the rooting process along more smoothly.
- Fill a small container with new potting soil and plant the stem.
- Gently yet thoroughly water your new plant.
- Create a little greenhouse by covering the pot in a plastic ziplock bag. Using a wooden stick or a piece of coat hanger, if necessary, you can protect the plastic bag from falling on your new plant.
- Choose a location where it will receive plenty of light, but from a shady angle.
Step 3: Growing and Transplanting Your New Roses
The roots of most Knock Out rose cuttings appear within a month or two. As spring arrives, these roots begin to take shape as small swellings, before morphing into full-fledged roots. During this time, make sure your plants aren’t overly wet. Keep in mind that when you are ready to plant your roses outside, it is important to gradually harden them off.
- Keep your new plants well-watered. Until you see how quickly they dry, you may have to check on them every day or every other day.
- Keep watering and feeding your plants indoors until the first week of October. Putting off planting until fall offers you more time to strengthen and harden the young plants’ roots before they are ready to be transplanted outdoors in the spring.
- Choose a place that receives full sunlight and has a well-draining soil.
- Place your Knock Out rose in a hole twice the size of its root ball, backfill, and you’re good to go. The plant needs a thorough watering.
- Start your fertilizing routine next spring if desired. The sensitive young roots of the plant can be damaged if fertiliser is applied too early.
Hardwood Cuttings Verses Softwood Cuttings.
Let’s start with a discussion on the difference between hardwood and softwood cuttings. This is something I really want you to grasp since it will make the process of propagating plants a lot simpler. Set the clock back to the beginning of March. Early April in Ohio is when the growing season typically gets underway. All deciduous plants (a deciduous plant is the opposite of an evergreen) begin producing leaves in the spring at this time. In the first few weeks of the growing season, the plants begin to sprout new leaves, and this is followed by a phase of rapid growth that lasts six to eight weeks. New growth might range from six to ten inches.
The new growth is extremely flexible and soft. You can bend it quite easily, and the new stems are so flimsy that you could easily crush them between your fingers if you tried. Growth begins to harden off and become increasingly difficult as the growing season passes. Plants slow down their growth in the fall as the cold weather approaches, allowing all of their branches to harden off. The new growth must be hardened off before it can withstand the harsh winter weather.
You can’t bend the stems without breaking them in the fall, and it’s improbable that you’ll be able to crush the stems between your fingers. When it comes to sawing wood, this is the difference between hardwood and softwood. A softwood cutting is one that is taken early in the growing season. Even cuttings taken in the fall and winter are considered hardwood cuttings.
Because of their suppleness and softer texture, softwood cuttings root more quickly than their hardwood counterparts. Softwood cuttings, on the other hand, are delicate and prone to failure, and hardwood cuttings, while tough as nails, require a long time to root. Your softwood cuttings will root for you fast if you keep them happy.
When is the Best Time to Take Cuttings from Roses?
You should keep this in your mind because it’s true of nearly every type of plant. Six weeks after the softwoods begin to produce leaves, you can begin taking cuttings. The first genuine leaves begin to appear in northern, Ohio, zone 6, about the third week of April. That date is six weeks from now. If you live in zones 4, 5, or 6, you should aim for mid-June as a target date. Start in mid-May if you live in a zone 7 or 8 area. Start even early if you’re in a warm zone, like 9 or 10.
Put next year’s date in your calendar right away. I’ll talk to you about cuttings during other times of the year. Early and midsummer cuttings, on the other hand, sprout quickly. And between now and then, I’ll show you the system I employ that makes it even easier. For the time being, however, I’ll refrain from going into detail on that subject. You’ll have to wait a while! Keep an eye on Mike’s channel.
Can I do Roses from Cuttings in the Fall?
Yes, but the wood is harder, and the roots will take longer to form. However, you have nothing to lose by giving it a shot. And if you warm their bottoms, they’ll be more inclined to support you. Plant propagation or seed starting heating mats are available for the purpose of germination of seeds or cuttings. They may be set up in a few minutes by plugging them in and placing the heating pad on top of your home. The heating mat you use should be specifically designed for the propagation of plants. There is the potential for harm, death, or fire if you use any other heating method. Don’t take any chances!
Is “Mike’s Plant Farm” equipped with heating mats? If so, how do they work? No. At this point, no. We normally set out the timing beforehand so that we don’t have to do that. During the summer, we cut tens of thousands of trees; in the early fall, we cut many more; and finally, in the winter, we cut hardwood trees. However, we have no immediate plans to utilize that low-level heat at the moment.
If you subscribe to my email, I’ll let you know what and when we’re rooting for and why at that particular time of year. Thank you for your interest.
Do Roses and other Plants Actually Think?
No, they do not. There are some conditions in which they behave like humans and other mammals. As soon as we break a bone in humans, our bodies begin forming a callus around it to provide stability as the bone heals. Broken bones aren’t fixed by doctors; our bodies do the work. In case a doctor isn’t available, our bodies form a callous cast inside our limbs.
Plants have many characteristics. As soon as you remove a cutting from the parent plant, you do everything you can to ensure that the cutting is healthy and happy. As a result of the plant’s health but lack of roots, it sets out to fix it. The first thing it does is form a callous over the cut. As a result, it grows new roots to support itself
It’s our job as gardeners, then, to maintain the cutting healthy and happy as it performs its vital role in the process of root formation. The cutting does most of the work…. At this point, we’re just onlookers who are oblivious.
To root your cuttings, first cut your cuttings to the desired length, if desired, and then dip the cuttings in rooting compound and insert them into your chosen rooting medium. Always cut more than you think you’ll need. Taking a lot of cuttings raises your chances of getting a few rooted cuttings significantly.
Simply place the dipped cutting in the rooting medium and water it thoroughly to ensure there are no air pockets around the cutting’s base. To protect the cuttings, I recommend covering them with a plastic water bottle or mason’s jar, if you don’t have one. Mason jars can very handy. Make sure your cuttings are protected from the sun by placing them in a shady area.
Keep Your Rose Cuttings Watered but not Soaking Wet.
This is a crucial aspect. It is important to remember that your cutting has no roots! As a result, it will rely on your care until it establishes itself. It’s a piece of cake, really. Keep the rooting media damp, but not sopping wet, since this can encourage root rot. If it’s loose enough, you won’t have to worry about overwatering when you water it. You can water as much as you like, as long as you don’t do it too frequently. The rooting media should be well-drained, as well. That’s why sand is commonly used. If the rooting medium does not drain adequately, the cutting’s bottom will decay, and it will not succeed.
Rooting Compounds. Which One should I Use?
It doesn’t matter in the slightest. I prefer liquid rooting agents because they are concentrated and I can use the same container all season. A lesser solution is used in the summer, a stronger one in the fall, and my highest rate is used in the winter for hardwood cuttings. The instructions are printed on the bottle, and they’re quite simple. This many parts per million of xyz are required in some places. Nothing much to say. Yes, all of it is correct, but neither you nor I require to be aware of it. Invest in a quality rooting solution and follow the instructions on the packaging.
It’s best to keep things simple. Don’t get bogged down in the details of a basic task. As scientific as some would have you believe, this isn’t the case.
Softwood cuttings require a softwood rooting solution and hardwood cuttings require a hardwood rooting solution. Big nurseries have tested both liquid rooting compounds and powder rooting compounds, and found that they both performed equally well. Regardless of what you read elsewhere.
Me? My preference is for Dip-n-Grow or Wood’s Rooting Compound because they are the most readily available. Because I buy from a local supplier, I’m able to take advantage of anything they have available this season. If they switch brands next year, you can bet that I will too. Why? We don’t care, since…
Rooting Compounds are Not some Kind of Magic Potion or Powder.
Here’s all you need to know about rooting agents. This is critical, so jot it down somewhere safe. They are a valuable resource. Rooting cuttings with their help increases your chances of success, but they don’t guarantee it. It’s time to review what we learned previously. It’s all about timing and execution. Those are the only two considerations that should be taken into account. Put that on your hand instead of the rest of it. It’s all about timing and technique.
How Do You Keep a Rose Cutting Healthy and Happy?
Warm but not too hot, and in a slightly humid but not rainy climate. You don’t want the rooting medium to be sopping moist. While the cutting is being rooted, keep it out of the direct sunlight. Cuttings that are trying to establish new roots do best in the shade, with just a smattering of sunlight to keep them supplied with food through photosynthesis.
When cutting in the fall, the wood is firmer, so the sun is less of a factor than it is in the summer, when the cutting wood is softer, more malleable, and more susceptible to damage from cuttings.
Using Sand as a Rooting Medium for Rose Cuttings.
Saaaaaannnnd? Is that what you’re saying? Not at all! It takes me a whole year to root a thousand or two of them in gritty sand. Why? Because it keeps the cuttings just moist enough, but not so damp that they rot. However, if you’re doing this at home, you can use sand, or if sand is too difficult to get by, a potting mix. Porcelain potting mix should not be thick and sticky. It’s an excellent idea to add Perlite to the mix. How much does it cost? To be honest, I’m not sure what to do about it. Nothing complicated here!
Five or six rose cuttings in potting soil are shown here. My examples of containers are, as you can see, quite little. There’s nothing more you need than a few square feet. The space allotted to each cutting in my outdoor propagation beds is one square inch. That’s all there is to it.
Remember. Softwood Cuttings Root the Fastest and You Do them During the Early Summer.
It’s not the beginning of spring. The rapid development and fragility of new growth make it difficult to establish roots in the early spring. Between 90 and 95 per cent of our cuttings are made from softwoods during the summer months of June through July, with a few taking place in August. Hardwood cuttings are one of the few activities that we engage in during the winter months. Purple Sandcherry with Pink Flowering Almond. Grapes and Dappled Willow. That’s all there is to say. Cuttings of hardwood are what we do. Possibly Rose of Sharon, but softwood cuttings from these plants are excellent.