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  • Sphagnum Propagation Question

    I have an Adriatic JH in a 10 oz cup in sphagnum moss. I actually started this in a cloner. But the roots stalled in the cloner so I moved it into a tupperware with sphagnum moss. The roots exploded but it started pushing green growth also. And it was leggy and pale so I then put it in a 10 oz cup using the two cup method. Been in the two cup for about 20 days. I did a kind of crappy job putting it in the cup. There is a lot of air in the bottom. Anyway I think it is time to move it to a larger container with some perlite and soil mix. There is really no way I think the roots can be separated from the sphagnum. How does one repot this? Any tricks? It seems odd to have this sphagnum moss in the middle of denser media in a container. But I can't see how to infiltrate it.

  • #2
    When I move plants up a size, I make the potting mixture I want, carefully unpot the plant, tease out what roots I can by shaking it a little, set it on about an inch or two of the medium, then surround it with the potting mix on all sides and on top. Sphagnum moss won't hurt the new stuff, and if you mix a little in with potting soil, it lightens it up. I haven't lost any seedlings due to re-potting. Good luck!
    Zone 7a in Virginia

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    • #3
      Blackfoot12,

      A photo would be helpful.
      If you used Long Fibered Sphagnum Moss then you should carefully remove as much of it as possible before up potting. The Moss will hold excessive moisture next to the cutting causing rot if the bottom area is not callused and fully hardened. If the moss is left tangled in the roots careful watering is required. IMO, Moss should only be used to pre-root the cuttings and they should be up potted while the roots are short before they become tangled.
      Click image for larger version

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      Moss and Cloner are 2 separate Pre-Rooting methods, only one (either) should be used before up potting to the next stage with a cutting mix, http://www.ourfigs.com/forum/figs-ho...ow-s-and-why-s Good Luck

      BTW, if you used peat moss simply up pot the cup without disturbing the roots as if it was a root plug. It should continue to grow happily in the new medium.
      Last edited by AscPete; 11-10-2015, 09:18 AM. Reason: added BTW
      Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b

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      • #4
        Pete the methodology thread is a great thread. I have read it and been following it. I have used Long Fibered Sphagnum Moss. I do realize that the cloner and the moss are two different methods. But, having had a number of cuttings stall and then die in the cloner I had to try something different. It is still alive so I don't regret it. Anyway, I accept it all as part of my learning curve. Thanks for the replies

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        • AscPete
          AscPete commented
          Editing a comment
          Thanks.
          I've also switched pre-rooting methods on the same cuttings in the past to salvage them.
          I was actually referring to the 2 inital pre-rooting steps before cupping in Moss. If you break it down to stages the cuttings should be pre-rooted then cupped in a cutting mix, your salvage procedure resulted in 3 separate pre-rooting stages (1st being unsuccessful). The cuttings could have been cupped in mix after the 1st successful pre-rooting in Moss, that's one reason why I started the Topic and stress that the stages should be clearly defined. Yes its definitely a learning curve and it took me hundreds of cuttings at the start. Good Luck

      • #5
        Ahhh, I see what you are saying. I have to laugh because when it became the point that I put it in the cup, I was so excited to see the roots doing so well. Well, the only way I can explain it is, I didn't want to ruin their party. Now looking back and being in the position of trying to figure out how to plant in a more sturdy medium, I realize I should have put them in that medium earlier.

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        • #6
          I would cut away as much moss as possible without touching the roots for the same reason Pete mentioned. A sharp pair of scissors will make your job much easier.
          Bob C.
          Kansas City, MO Z6

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          • #7
            I'm in total agreement with Bob C. , scissors is what I've used to snip out the Moss.

            Tip;
            Always pre-water (wet) the potting mix that you will be using to pot the cuttings never "water in", this ensures that the mix isn't water logged and anaerobic which will slow and sometimes stop root growth of cuttings.

            Trick;
            When potting up place 1/3 of the mix in the bottom of the container, suspend the cutting with one hand in the middle of the container and fill around the cutting with the other hand, when the container is full hold the cutting at this depth with one hand and gently tap the bottom of the container on a hard surface a couple of times with the other hand. This will settle the mix around the roots of the cutting but maintain air spaces. You can then add enough mix to top off the container, and do not water in.
            Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b

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            • #8
              OK. Thank you for the replies. I will let you know how it works. Kinda like surgery. Ha ha. Except I'm no surgeon.

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              • #9
                I am pretty good at uprooting rooted cuttings now it is easy for the most part. I start by determining that the cutting is ready to be moved then I place the cup with the cutting inside of the one gallon planter that has a bit of planting mix in the bottom. Then I fill the planter around the cup. tamp it down a wee bit and then when it is full to the line if mix in the cup I twist the cup out of the planting mix and then it is time to squeeze the rooted cutting out of the cup. It must be done gently and coaxing it out is the most difficult part of the process ,then when the roots let go of the cup tip the cup upside down and the rooted cutting will fall into your hand,at this point insert the rooted cutting directly into the hole left by the cup (will be a perfect fit) the cutting is uprooted and the roots are undisturbed. Sorry about the run on sentences but I must have slept thru all those english classes in school(except the one that explained the run on sentence.
                Larry

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                • #10
                  For posterity's sake I think most of us moisten the potting mix so that when squeezed it will hold together but not drip water. For some very finicky cuttings that will die without enough air at the roots I don't even tamp or tap to get the soil to settle. When it starts looking as if it needs water I use a mister set to fine and spray some on top. Over time the plant will tolerate more closely compacted soils.
                  Bob C.
                  Kansas City, MO Z6

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                  • #11
                    Can you use other moss types other then Sphagnum? We have lots of Spanish moss growing on our trees. Would this work and if so, would it have to be prepared in some way before it can be used?
                    Edward - Edgewater, Florida (Zone 9b)
                    Wish List: Holy Smokes, U. Prosciutto, Ham Rham, Labritja

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                    • #12
                      Here is the cutting. I was able to separate almost all the sphagnum from the roots. There was some loss of some fine roots. Inevitable. The one leaf looks chlorotic. I separated on the 11th (3 days ago). I sprayed the leaves with 1/2 Tsp MG per gallon of water on the 11th and 12th. The leaves look like they have some kind of fungal infection. See the small holes? Should I leave it alone?, treat it with copper fungicide? move it out of the bin so it doesn't infect other plants? Thoughts? Thank you. I would really like this one to live since it is my last cutting of Adriatic JH
                      You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 1 photos.

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                      • #13
                        The cutting looks good, but nutrient deficient.
                        It needs more nutrients than it can get from foliar feeding.

                        If its planted in sifted or large Perlite (without the possibility of water logging the roots or the bottom of the container) it could be watered with a dilute nutrient solution since its fast draining, I start fertilizing almost as soon as roots develop. Good luck
                        Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b

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                        • #14
                          OK Pete. I will give it a dilute nutrient solution and continue to foliar feed. If it survives I will be impressed. And not with myself but with its will to survive. Thank you.

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                          • #15
                            Best of Luck.

                            I'm just curious...
                            Did you pre-water or rinse the perlite before potting the cutting?
                            You could have done so with the nutrient solution, per the often recommended advise to pre-wet or water (moist not wet or water logged) the potting mix that's used for cuttings.

                            Also Miracle-Gro All Purpose fertilizer doesn't contain and Calcium or Magnesium which the cuttings need for proper growth especially in an inert growing medium.
                            Pete R - Hudson Valley, NY - zone 5b

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                            • #16
                              Pete. Yes I did soak the perlite after I sifted it. I soaked it in hot water for about 30 minutes. Then drained it. I am using Aqua Vega 2 part at 5 ml/Gal every third day as a flow through solution. But prior to repotting I had only used water. As I am writing this it occurs to me that I need to adjust my water ph as per your rooting in a bag thread. Out of the tap it's between 7 and 7.2. I'll let you know how I make out with it. Thank you for your help.

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                              • AscPete
                                AscPete commented
                                Editing a comment
                                Thanks for the reply. You're welcome.

                                BTW if you have access to those materials your pre-rooting could be performed with Perlite watered with pH adjusted solution (water). eliminating the other pre-rooting methods.
                                Last edited by AscPete; 11-15-2015, 09:43 AM. Reason: added BTW.
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