Saturday, January 11, 2014

Carini Fig Cuttings. 1.11.14

Carini Fig Start

Carini Fig Cuttings, showing supplies
 The top photo is the start I removed from the Carini fig tree after the big freeze.  This was a small underground branch.  I haven't decided if it will grow or not.  Worth trying.  So far it has made no increase in size, appearing to be in suspended inanimation.

I think fresh cuttings are much more likely to succeed.  This time I won't make the same mistake twice.  One will go into garage for the winter.

Method-

1.  Wash the cuttings.
2.  Make incision about 2 cm long, shallow, with sharp knife, near base of cutting.  The incision exposes cambium, which is the "stem cell" layer that callouses and forms baby roots.  Not required, but looking at the effectiveness of root growth at incision, it helps a lot.
3.  Dip in Dip-and-grow at 1:5 dilution for 5 seconds.
4.  Wrap in paper towel, moistened with house-plant-food at 7 drops per gallon - the directions for house plants state 7 drops per quart.  That is for growing plants in soil.  I want just a trace.
5.  Place in plastic bag.  I like to blow in a little air.  Twist and clip.
6.  Now it goes onto seed starting mat, with a plastic container between the cutting bag and the mat.
7. Every 2 or 3 days, I open the bags, inspect, rinse the cuttings in plain water..  If there is a start of mold or mildew, I send the paper towel to compost and replace with a new moist paper towel.
Carini Fig Cuttings, ready to incubate.
8  When roots are about 1/2 to 1 inch long, I pot them up in seed starting medium.

Figs can be grown form cuttings stuck into the garden soil and ignored for a year.  This method gets me results much faster.  I can see the baby roots form, very rewarding.  I can trouble shoot problems, like mold.  There are no insects or gnats.  The head start gives me a year or more of growth, ahead of starting in the garden.

I really like this Carini.  If the outside tree is freeze-killed, one of these will replace it.  If not, one goes into container, and the others to give to people who would  like a really nice  fig start.

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