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  • Active growth= Successful Air layer

    Other folks have stated this before and I just wanted to add my 4 cents in that it is true. Last year I would have stated it’s hard to mess up an air layer and that I had never failed one. Last year all my figs freshly up potted on irrigation I could control and getting reasonable amount of fertilizer and had good growth. This year as most were going in ground they were pot bound and when I did not get them in ground as soon as intended they went through early summer with minimal water and the combined result was very little growth. My air layers were extremely slow to show roots and it was weak root growth and some never even have showed root. I used the same methods I used last year about a ¾ girdle if older wood and some Clonex Gel but really think those are minimal factors compared to active growth. It doesn’t have to be on the active growth area of a branch, just the plant showing good growth in general. The same plants I layered with ease last year caused me stress this year.

    I was speaking with another member this week and he commented on how one cultivar layered so easy and quick. It’s the same cultivar that I have had an air layer on all year with no take and a 2nd that I started later and no roots. My tree is healthy but I have had no growth on tree for 2 years. His tree when I saw earlier this season was in vigorous growth and BTW I know they are the same as his cutting came from me and is now 4 times the size of mom back early season probably 8 times by now. I don’t manage the best growth that some of you do as I am not as attentive but regardless active growth=quick, easy, vigorous roots. Last year my main issue with air layers was the top growing too much before I could remove layer, this year its weak root development. As my trees have had a season to establish roots and will likely freeze back I expect vigorous next season growth on those that survive the winter. And now that air layer window has closed on me my trees the last few weeks with recent rains and time to find their footing have taken off with more growth than I saw all season even though I have not fertilized since July. Hope it has time to harden off. That’s my 6 cents updated to reflect inflation during my rambling
    Last edited by strudeldog; 10-09-2015, 11:01 AM.
    Phil North Georgia Zone 7 Looking for: All of them, and on and on,

  • #2
    I agree, Phil. This year I air layered 20-30 trees and saw all kinds of behavior. As you said, active tree growth=faster rooting air layers (for the most part). Then I had some that were just stagnant and never put out air layer roots.
    Frank ~ zone 7a VA

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    • #3
      Agree completely
      Cutting sales have ended for the season. Plant sales will start March 1 at 8 eastern time. If it is still too cold in your area I can hold your plants till a date of your choosing.

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      • #4
        I tried my hand at airlayering a RdB for a friend. Once it put out from freeze back, it grew rapidly. I used a water bottle split down one side and filled with MG moisture control potting soil. As roots started to show, the top had outgrown the roots tremendously so I put on another airlayer on the same stem, above the first. I harvested both about a month ago and put them in heavy shade without pruning any of the top out. Click image for larger version

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        PPP
        Eatonton, GA zone 7b/8a

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        • #5
          I got to play around with air layers a little bit this year. I love them. Quick, easy, and they produce strong plants months ahead of cuttings.
          Don - OH Zone 6a Wish list: Zaffiro, Moro de Caneva, Nerucciolo d'Elba, Bordissot Blanca Negra, Rubado

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          • #6
            I did some bottle air layers on some trees over the winter. It was easy to set up because no leaves were in the way. I didn't see any roots by May, (when the trees went outside) but by July, they all had crowded root systems in the bottles. I didn't use any hormones or score the bark. Just stepped away, and let nature do it's thing.
            Hi my name is Art. I buy fig cuttings-so I can grow more figs-so I can sell more figs-so I can buy more fig cuttings-so I can grow more figs....

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            • Jamie0507
              Jamie0507 commented
              Editing a comment
              I like that idea of setting up the airlayers during the winter. Definitely agree that it would be easier without the leaves! Thanks for the tip cjmach! Plus it's something to do when the "winter blues" set in
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