Bittersweet Propagation - Knowledgebase Question

Tiverton, RI
Question by fang
November 4, 1997
Can I start a new bittersweet vine by cutting or layering? If so, how do you recommend doing it?


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Answer from NGA
November 4, 1997

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Bittersweet is an ornamental vine or climbing shrub with not only attractive foliage but brightly colored fall fruit, and growing to about 20 feet in height. It is very easy to grow and in fact can become invasive. It is hardy just about everywhere in the United States.

Bittersweet can be propagated by layering, root-cutting or by seed. The simplest method would be layering, and in-fact, it may have self-layered already. Look around the base of the plant for new shoots presenting themselves.If you gently dig down you may see it can be cut from the main plant. It will have a stem and root attached. After you cut the attachment, dig it up and plant it where you wish! Or, you can layer it by bending a long stem, gently placing it under the surface of the soil (while still attached to the mother plant). I always put a large rock on top of this location to hold the stem there, and also to identify where I am working on a root layering. Leave it like this for a growing season and then, beingsure a root has formed, cut it from the mother plant, dig the root up gently and plant it where you would like!

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