A cutting is simply a small branch cut from a larger tree.
There are some excellent reasons for taking cuttings:
1. You can grow a bonsai from this cutting. It is a great deal quicker compared to growing from seed.
2. The cutting will contain the same characteristics of the parent tree. This is interesting - if you have a bonsai tree that possess strong branch structure, small leaves, attractive looking bark - then the cutting will also have these characteristics! Seeds will not - seeds are very much hit or miss.
|Make sure your cutting has brown wood. The green shoot growing is still not going to be strong enough to take.|
|Once you cut, you need to remove some of the lower shoots.|
|I end up cutting those other two small branches as well. When you plant these cuttings in soil, you need to push them 2/3 of the way in.|
|Working my way through the trees.|
|Generally the cutting should be between 7.5 to 12.5 cm in length|
and make sure you include two or more nodes. This way, your cutting has a greater chance of living.
|Cutting soil should be well draining. I mix half potting mix with some acadama soil.|
|It is important that the water drains freely. I add some drainage stones on the bottom layer. Having the soil hold too much water will cause the cuttings to rot.|
|I buy some root growth powder to facilitate rapid growth.|
|Roots will usually form in two to five weeks.|
Research suggests to plant your cuttings close together. This method has a better chance as there is less moisture loss through transpiration.
|Looking like a little forest already.|
|Make a hole with a chopstick first and then push the cutting down into the hole. Use your index and middle finger of your same hand to compress the soil on either side of the cutting.|
|We also decided to take some flowering cherry cuttings from the side of the road. Four of these cuttings produce red flowers and three produce brilliant white flowers.|
|We will do our best here and see what happens. One of the great things about trying to begin a new bonsai by taking a cutting is that it is for FREE. If they fail, try and work out why, but at least you haven't lost any money.|
|Place your cuttings in a shaded area.|