Well, not yet, anyway.  In my last update on the umpteen cuttings I have going I noted that many were beginning to break into bud which was encouraging.  At the time I resisted the temptation to break open the pots and see if they had been busy forming roots.  Every time I go near the greenhouse I can almost hear them calling to me.  “go on, have a look, you know you want to…”.  Well, I do, but I am not listening.  I see lots more top growth in nearly all the cuttings, some more than others.

Even the ones I’ve kept outdoors have begun to show signs of new growth.  I am erring on the side of caution and am waiting till I actually see roots poking out of the bottom of the pots.  That will be concrete proof (obviously) that the cuttings have struck and are growing away nicely.  There are no signs yet of any roots thus emerging, so I am keeping my powder dry for now.  It feels like ages ago that the cuttings were set out but it was really only 4 months ago.  Hardwood cuttings need substantially longer to put on roots than tip or softwood cuttings. I’m going to try to wait till May sometime.

I remain encouraged by the top growth, I am assuming this must be a sign of planty contentment, and probably means they are beginning to root.  It is also possible that this top growth is still just getting its energy from the reserves in the stem.  If that’s true I expect they’ll continue to grow until there’s no more juice in the stem then they’ll quickly die off.

Here is the state of the nation for the cuttings. The relevant photo follows the bullet point.

  • rubus cockburnianus. Some good growth.
  • rosa jacques cartier – not doing a whole lot. One of the three stems has some top growth so am hopeful of some return.
  • Salvia hot lips – miraculous resurrection continues. 3 of 4 stems have some good growth. 
  • wisteria – had an early hurrah then eased off. Now several shoots show new growth a few cm long. Encouraging.
  • wigelia bristol ruby – doing great. Lots of top growth.
  • physocarpus opufolius – good shoots on about half the stems.
  • daphne alba – looking a bit sad tbh, not sure these will make it. Couple of signs of fresh buds though so not a goner yet.
  • Sambucus nigra – vigorous growth on most stems 
  • weigelia (var unknown) – looking healthy
  • exochorda macrantha ‘the bride’ – I could convince myself that several buds are about to burst forth. No visible growth.
  • rosa danse de feu – some strong growth on some stems.  Some nothing at all. About half and half.
  • cotinus coggygria. Not much doing. Not a big fan of hardwood cuttings, the cotinus, I’ll do better to take tip cuttings once the bush gets going in the garden. We’ll see though, the parent bush has only just started to bud out so these stems might just be laggards.
  • eleagnus ‘quicksilver’ – some good signs of growth on nearly all stems
  • trachelospermum jasminoides – nothing
  • abutilon kentish belle – nothing at all. Look pretty dead to me. Shame I was looking forward to having some of this.
  • hydrangea annabelle – 2 or 3 have shoots and I think I see signs of more emerging from below the surface.
  • perovskia – some good recent shoots. Looks like it is waking up.
  • Plum – good growth on 4 out of 6 stems.
  • Redcurrant- very vigorous on all stems 
  • Blackcurrant – good growth, all stems 
  • Cornus Alba – definite signs of life on more than half of stems

So all in all I think they are doing ok. 50% success rate is pretty good going with hardwood cuttings. I will continue to try not to look inside the pots for another month or so.

I’ll be back with a rooty update in a few weeks then.

[Update 02-May-17: Here is some rooting news, very exciting]