The Q&A Archives: Redbud Propagation

Question: Is it possible to propagate a redbud tree from softwood cuttings? If so, how and when?

Answer: I have not been able to root this tree (Cercis canadensis) from cuttings. Commercially produced cultivars are done by budding onto seedgrown rootstock, according to Michael Dirr's Manual of Woody Plants. If you have a tree you would like to propagate, you might have some success with seedlings. Again according to Dirr, the seeds need scarification in concentrated sulphuric acid for 30 minutes, then cold treatment for 5 to 8 weeks, with a moist stratification recommended. In my own garden, however, numerous seedlings pop up every spring and can be easily transplanted.

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