How to Propagate with Softwood Cuttings

Softwood cuttings are taken from soft, new growth at the tips of nonflowering shoots, produced in spring and early summer. Most root in six to eight weeks. Softwood shoots wilt quickly; take cuttings early in the day before the sun gets hot.

Lupinus Chandelier Spires of Bright Yellow Flowers

Lupinus Chandelier Spires of Bright Yellow Flowers

From May to July, Lupine ‘Chandelier’ shows off its cheerful spires of bright yellow to creamy yellow pea flowers rising above dense clumps of mid-green leaves. Perfect perennial in a sunny border of a cottage garden.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

From May to July, Lupine ‘Chandelier’ shows off its cheerful spires of bright yellow to creamy yellow pea flowers rising above dense clumps of mid-green leaves. Perfect perennial in a sunny border of a cottage garden.

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Step 1: Trim Below Leaf Joint

Below the Leaf Joint

Below the Leaf Joint

For softwood cuttings cut sections 3-4 inches long from the tips of healthy, young, nonflowering stems.

©2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Cut sections 3–4 in (8–10 cm) long from the tips of healthy, young, nonflowering stems, using pruners or a knife. Place in a closed plastic bag out of the sun as you work. Trim the cutting just below a leaf joint. Remove the leaves from the lower part of the cutting so that only 2 or 3 remain at the top.  

Step 2: Plant, Water and Label

Plant, Water, Label

Plant, Water, Label

For planting softwood cuttings, dip the end of the stem in hormone rooting powder. Push lower half into potting mix and gently firm in.

©2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Dip the end of the stem in hormone rooting powder. Push the lower half into the potting mix, around the edge of the pot when there are several cuttings. Gently firm in, water thoroughly with tap water, and label. Enclose in a plastic bag or propagator. Most will root best at 59–70°F (15–21°C).

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