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Thread: sand beds

  1. #1

    sand beds

    Hi;
    I have been sticking cuttings in sand with heat .
    For two weeks now i see some callising starting on most of the cuttings.forsithia's ,arborvitae.
    Have been trying the upside down method with grapes ,burning bush for now and a few other landscape plants i had trouble with under the mist like photinia's,burning bush,with heat to see what happens!
    I am enjoying all the action this late fall weather has brought,never thought i could start plants in the cool of the fall & winter.
    I am amazed what a little heat will do in the right place.

    Thanks all
    John Sweaney zone 8

    Ps
    Need a list of shrubs that root well in out side sand with heat.?
    Last edited by J SWEANEY; 11-09-2003 at 12:21 AM.
    jsweaney
    yelmtel.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    nashville,tn area
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    59

    sand beds

    Sounds like you are on your way,keep on sticking those cuttings.
    William B.

  3. #3

    sand beds

    Hi Williams;
    Thanks for the reply and encouragement,will keep sticking cuttings.
    Works good in my area,have you tried it yet?

    Sincerly
    John Sweaney Zone 8
    jsweaney
    yelmtel.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Surrey, BC, Canada
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    221

    bottom heat

    John-I did a winter or two with bottom heat under cuttings. It does wonders for sure, just pulls the roots out of those babies!

    In general, the evergreens are the things you can root at this time. Most deciduous stuff roots so well in June/July, it's a waste to try them now.

    I found arctostaphylos roots 100% in October, for e.g. Also rhodos and arborvitae do best in fall. A nice plant is the Hinoki cypress, which roots best in Feb, rather than now. Threadleaf cypress is another good one for right now, roots easily. I would try arbutus unedo now as well, really anything evergreen works with the bottom heat, tho some stuff seems to prefer having a bit of frost first...I think this is more the trees like Sequoia (Dec.) and Taxus (anytime after several good frosts works well). Try lots of things and keep notes.

    I did find the heat is costly, so I wouldn't use it totally outdoors during winter. I kept mine under a low poly tunnel, otherwise you're running it 24/7 and drying out the sand like crazy as well. With some cover, no need for mist...actually needed to reduce the humidity in there rather than increase it.

    I also found that some peat in the sand, or peat/perlite worked real well, since I had the area covered anyway and perfect drainage wasn't needed like in an uncovered bed. You're in the same climate area as me, so you'll run into the same problems, and advantages.

    Hmm, I guess this topic could go over into the Nursery section, so much to talk about!

    Glen in BC

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Southern New Jersey
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    14
    I just got a couple of heat mats that fit under 4 standard planting flats. I was planning on taking some evergreen cuttings (arborvitae, gold thread, juniper and boxwood) and placing the flats in my garage, which has some light but not much. Do you guys (or gals) think that I would need an articial light source to have the cuttings root over the winter? Iam hoping to avoid it, but if need be, i have a 4 foot flourescent light. Any thoughts?

  6. #6

    Thanks

    hi;
    I think i have the information that i need to know.
    Junipers and the like in the fall and early winter before it gets too cold.

    Sincerly
    John Sweaney zone 8
    jsweaney
    yelmtel.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Surrey, BC, Canada
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    221

    Light for rooting

    Tchambeau--I did try rooting my rhodos in fall/winter under 70% shade, and they did poorly. Only when I removed that cover and replaced with clear poly did things start to green up and really root well. Evergreens never really go dormant like deciduous stuff, so I would keep at least 150-200 foot candles, which is like a foot away from the fluorescent tube I think.

    Your garage seems light when you walk in coz your eyes get adjusted, but put a light meter in there and you might be surprised how little there really is. The plants do want to make some food from the light during the winter, and often there is less sun this time of year as well as being weaker...I would consider artificial light in there myself.

    The garage is nice coz of the temp control you get...start tracking how much electricity you're burning on the heat cables and you'll be more careful of just leaving them out in the open to run constantly. Those rooted cuttings can wind up being real expensive after several months of power consumption...even here in zone 7 I won't root stuff in winter if I can do them in the summer with very little bottom heat. Rhodos are often done by the big boys in July/August, probably for that reason...just a fraction of the power/fuel bill to create the same number of plants.

    Another thing is easy stuff like arborvitae will root fine without the bottom heat, esp. if started earlier in the fall. If you get into it somewhat commercially, you'll want to figure the cheapest way to do stuff, not necessarily the absolute fastest. I learned this from a propagator in Ireland who advised to root a lot of things in unheated tunnels if possible, and save the expensive setup for stuff that could only be rooted that way. It's not the top line, but the bottom line that counts (what you have left after paying all the expenses=profit).

    Hmmm,. I see I'm droning on here. Just was on my mind coz of my own experiences. After a few years of propagating, I'm starting to insist that this stuff turn a profit and not just be a fun hobby, which it also is!

    Glen in BC

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Southern New Jersey
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    14
    Thanks Glenn, your probably right. Since this is only a hobby, except for a possibly driveway sale in a couple of years, I should keep costs down. My garage is insulated and attached to my house, so it usually doesn't go down below freezing. Hopefully the heatpads won't have to run too much. I guess I'll try putting the 4 foot flourescent over the flats. Hopefully 8 hours or so will be enough. I'll let you know how things turn out. Thanks again.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Southern New Jersey
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    14
    Glen,
    I forgot to mention that I was planning on using 1/2 peat, 1/2 perlite mixture. The flats will have plastic domes over them and will be placed on trays which I planned on keeping a little water in. In your experience did you have to water frequently over the winter and did you water from the top or keep water in the trays?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Surrey, BC, Canada
    Posts
    221

    Watering overwinter

    T--I know there's a system of rooting where you leave a flat in a bit of water, but then you have to use straight perlite. I tried this and the clematis I was doing didn't like it that much...just lots of callus without much rooting.

    I do find you have to water occasionally, depending on how much the heat is running and how much the air changes. Not enough air movement and you may run into a lot of disease cropping up, better to allow some air movement and keep on top of the watering.

    Just be aware that the mix will dry out from the bottom up, so a moist surface might fool you while the bottom of the flat is dry like toast. Have to get a feel for how your situation works, might be once a week watering, might be once a month depending on all the variables.

    Always learning!

    Glen in BC

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Surrey, BC, Canada
    Posts
    221

    rooting info

    T and all--just a thought that some of the newer folks might not know about the awesome info on rooting available online.
    http://www.growit.com/Know/Rooting.htm

    This one is good for hours of browsing!

    Glen in BC

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Southern New Jersey
    Posts
    14
    Thanks Glenn for the info, I will also check the link out.
    Todd

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    nashville,tn area
    Posts
    59
    J.Sweaney,
    Sorry it took me awhile to answer your question.Yes I've been misting for three years and a heated bed for one year.I've had good luck with most everything in heated bed except dwarf alberta spruce,don't know why.
    Thanks William B.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    nashville,tn area
    Posts
    59
    Glenn and All,
    I check Growit .com everyday.During bareroot season you'll never know what you'll find.If you will click classifieds then specials you might find somthing you need.
    Thanks William B.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    443
    hey tony
    i dont have much luck /ok no luck with dwf alb's either on bottom heat.they dry out fast.moderate success in outdoor beds under mist.
    what size cutting are you taking when doing them.
    i will start doing my cuttings in a week while i am vacationing in hopefully my SUNNY greenhouse.
    will coco butter interfere with dip and grow
    also i am going too hook up the mist system with these beds.
    does anyone use straight med course vermiculite in stead of sand?
    shepp zone5/6

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