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  • How much do you water newly rooted cuttings?

    Lou's post made me think--how/how much does everyone water their rooted cuttings? Please respond with how you handle both rooted cuttings in cups and those which you have already up-potted to 1 gallon containers. Thank you in advance!

    For lack of a better system, I'm just giving them a few tbsp. of water every week with a running humidifier nearby and they seem to be doing okay. It will get more challenging once more cuttings root, though, I'm sure.
    Last edited by Kelby; 01-06-2016, 08:05 AM.
    Zone 7a in Virginia

  • #2
    I learned my lesson last summer. I don't water the cuttings until I up pot them out of the cups when the roots are established. Based on my experience (which isn't much, so take it for what it's worth), water is the enemy of new roots.

    As for those in smaller pots...as little as I can get away with. If it rains, it rains...but I don't water unless there are plain signs of heat distress.
    Last edited by DBJohnson; 01-05-2016, 12:20 PM. Reason: Added my $0.02 about pots...
    Bryant...Franklin County, VA...Zone 7a. Wish List: a 32 hour day....more sleep


    • #3
      I think depend on you mix in cups and pots. I use 50/50 peat pearl and unless they feel very light and have no condensation inside cup that I can see I give a shot of water. Just enough to give a small weight difference. I think everyone will different because how they are rooting. If on heat mat with very pouris mix may need more water than others that have cuttings sealed with wax or parafilm or in high humidity with more heavy mix I think they water less. Bryant correct... Water is rooted cutting worst enemy. Some people just mist the tops and that's all...
      Zone 5 Chicago IL Wish list:
      1) Rest peacfully Amico Bello Buddy 👼🏼.
      2) This weeks ebay auctions.


      • #4

        Take a read through this method MaiMai posted http://www.ourfigs.com/forum/figs-ho...ng-propagation This is how im going to be doing mine from now on and it talks about watering specifics as well. As for my cuttings in cups, I dont water them while they are in my humidity bins. Once I take them out I give them a little bit of a drink but then just manage the weight of the cups, letting them get fairly dry before I add a little more water. Again not much experience here and like they said above it seems water is the fastest way to kill them.
        2022: The year of figs and a new love of Citrus thanks to madisoncitrusnursery.com


        • #5
          I did the 3 cup method as my first attempt at rooting cuttings. I went into it knowing like everyone has said that too much water is the usual killer. As long as there was condensation on the cup's dome, I left them alone. Now there are roots and leaves everywhere and the dome is off. Now I wait about 7 days and pick the cup up. I didn't think I would be able to, but I can feel when the cup is really light. I will water until water comes out the holes in the bottom.

          I recently started another variety of cuttings using this method, and I'm getting the same results so far.
          Houston, TX Zone 9a


          • #6
            I don't water on a regular basis, and it's not needed in the humidity bins. Once they are rooted well and show leaves, I add an opaque secondary container and move them out to heating mats by a sliding door for light. Some leaf out before I see roots, and I keep a clear cup on top with a little mist of water inside for added humidity when I move them to the mats.

            For those that are leafed out (no dome) and rooting well on a heating mat near the window, they dry out faster so I see if the top few inches are dry. If so, I use a squeeze water bottle with a small spout to trickle just a LITTLE water around the inner perimeter of the cup, not the middle, and you can see through the clear cup how far it's gone. I trickle a little water every inch or so around the inner perimeter until I can see periodic damp swathes through the dry zone. Those clear cups are also in a slightly bigger opaque Solo cup, and I find that adding a tiny amount of water to that keeps humidity up in the area between the outer and inner cups.
            Bay Area, CA (zone: 9B)


            • #7
              These are all great responses, thanks guys! I'm asking because my oh-so-scientific method of giving them a tiny bit of water with a drinking straw (usually 1-2 strawfuls) each weekend seems to work, but I wanted to be sure what might be best.
              Zone 7a in Virginia


              • #8
                Last year I tried watering rooted cuttings still in the cup from below, dipping the 24-48 oz cup so the bottom was only down about 1/2 to one inch in a cup with water to put a little water in from below, usually holding it there for several seconds, then letting it drain. Some water wicked upwards, but the top part stayed dry, and I think this did a good job of not overwatering them.
                SW PA zone 6a


                • #9
                  I've been weighing the cuttings that I've been rooting in fairly dry mix and keeping them within 10-15g of that weight. Watering around the sides without roots or the bottom if using bottom heat.

                  I think the young plants don't like change more than they don't like water though. I want to do some more testing someday but I've started trying to root a cutting sitting in an almost constant pool of water....I did let it dry up some when it started to smell foul at the bottom. This little guy soaked up probably a cup of water in a 20oz cup based off of its weight and seems to be rooting right on track with the rest of its brothers. They do seem to be vigorous cuttings though. Some of the more finicky varieties may just rot this way?

                  Kind of hard to see in the photo but it's only been 16 days and there is a root hitting the side of the cup at the bottom, the buds are starting to leaf out, and the soil is extremely wet. No humidity dome and no worry about over watering.
                  You may only view thumbnails in this gallery. This gallery has 1 photos.
                  Don - OH Zone 6a Wish list: Verdolino, Black Celeste


                  • cis4elk
                    cis4elk commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I think you are right about cuttings liking stability. I also think weighing can be a great tool to avoid over watering. We went to Mexico for a long week a couple years ago and I had a neighbor lady water my figglings while we were away. The neighbor is your average homeowner who doesn't put much time or thought into growing things. So, my solution was to weigh the cups a couple weeks ahead of time at a point when they seemed pretty happy and then I stayed close to that weight and showed her how. When I got home they all looked happy and healthy. Crisis averted.
                    As far as keeping them really moist, in my experiences..they don't mind this until they get a fair amount of root going and have started to grow. Then one day, all of the sudden the roots look soggy and within a week they start to droop, then you have about another week until they ultimately rot out from inside the cutting.