The Q&A Archives: How Can I Start A Fresh Clipping Off Of My Rose Bushes

Question: Im not sure what type of roses i have but i was told they were wild roses they are alot of stems on one bush can you tell me what kind they are and can i start a new rose bush if i clip it and put it in water until it roots thank you for your help

Answer: Unfortunately there are many types of shrub roses and several types of wild roses so it would be difficult for me to guess which one you have. If there are countless lovely small white blossoms and the canes are very long, it might be multiflora rose which is considered an introduced (non-native) and noxious weed in many areas.

Rather than using water, it would be better to use a clean soilless potting mix -- here are a number of ways to propagate a rose bush.

There are as many methods for doing this as there are
rosarians. Here is one method for rooting them: First find a
healthy stem tip that's the right age and size. (A good one
will snap when you try to break it off.) Take stem tip with
six sets of leaves on it. Remove the two bottom sets of
leaves and cut off the tip just below the second set of leaves
from the top. (Now you have a short piece with just two
sets of leaves on it -- keep it right side up.) Some gardeners
will use a rooting hormone at this stage, but it is not strictly
necessary. Now stick the stem into the soil up to the bottom
leaves. Firm the soil, water it lightly and cover the cutting
with a large glass jar pushed securely into the soil. Usually
the moisture condensing inside the jar is sufficient to keep
the cutting watered, and new shoots appear in about a
month. Don't take the jar off until the cutting has enough
roots to support itself. (This may take the entire growing

The most important part of the process is selecting the
planting spot. You will need a well prepared planting bed
well amended with organic matter and a location in morning
sun or partial shade as the cutting should be protected from
hot afternoon sun. Alternatively, you might try sticking the
cutting in a pot and enclosing the whole thing in a clear
plastic bag. In this case, the pot should be kept in very
bright but indirect light.

Depending on what type of rose this is, you may find that
cuttings root poorly. I mention this because many of the
hybrid tea roses simply have weak root systems.

Roses can also be layered, which involves bending a branch
down to the ground in a "U" shape so that the bent portion
is buried and the growing tip is above ground. To encourage
rooting, wound the bottom side of the branch slightly where
it touches the soil, cover it with a few inches of soil, weight it
down with a rock and top with a generous layer of mulch.
Water it occasionally during the growing season. Eventually,
the branch will develop enough roots from the wounded
area to support itself enough to separated from the parent

If the rose is a shrub rose growing on its own roots, you
may be able to simply dig up and remove a sucker, or
rooted shoot, from near the base of the plant. This would be
an easier method of propagating it.

Finally, roses can also be grown from seed, but unless you
are growing a species rose there is no garantee that seed
will be viable or that the resulting plant will resemble the

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