The Q&A Archives: Pussy Willow

Question: I just purchased a bunch of cut pussy willow branches. I have been told they can be easily rooted, but I'm not sure how. A few people at a flower show said something about smashing the bottoms with a hammer? I don't remember if they said put in water or Not to put in water. Can you inform me the exact procedure? Thankyou

Answer: In my experience, freshly cut pussy willow stems will root in the vase after several weeks and do not require any special treatment. They must be kept wet at all times, however, and the cut ends of the stems must not have been allowed to dry out. If dried out, they may not absorb water any more. If the cut ends were kept out of water, you could try recutting them several inches up from the base and setting them in water. Willows have an amazing propensity to root, so you could also try treating them as normal tip cuttings and insert the cut ends into clean soilless potting mix, keeping the medium evenly moist to wet and watch for roots to form. When using soil, for added insurance you could also use a rooting hormone powder. This is sold in very small packages in garden centers.

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